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Tawa pulao is a Mumbai dish. Unlike regular rice dishes which are made in a pot or deep vessel, the tava pulao is made on a flat tawa – a flat concave pan with a large diameter (smaller ones are used to make rotis). The vendors who sell tava pulao also typically offer pav bhaji, masala pav and even ragda pattice – all of which are equally popular street foods.
At home, tava pulao can be made in a pan or a wok. The speciality of this dish is that you’ll be using Pav Bhaji masala to spice it up. So it’ll give you a mixed taste of rice that has the pav bhaji spice taste (which Mumbaikars love).
Tava pulao can be made with your choice of vegetables. Generally capsicum and tomatoes are a must but you can also add peas, French beans and carrots if you want to make it healthy and tasty.
- 4 cups Rice (boiled)
- 2 large Onions (1 cup, finely chopped)
- 3 medium-sized Capsicums (1 cup, finely chopped)
- 1 Tomato
- 10 strings French Beans
- 1/2 cup Peas (Boiled)
- 1 small Carrot
- 1 small Potato
- 1 tsp Pav Bhaji Masala
- 1 tsp Red Chilli Powder
- 1/2 tsp Turmeric Powder
- 1 Green Chilli
- 1 tsp Cumin Seeds
- 1 tsp Ginger-Garlic Paste
- 1 tbsp Green Coriander Leaves (chopped)
- 2 tbsp Oil
- Salt to taste
The rice should be cooked at least a few hours before making this.
Chop the tomato, potato and green chilli finely. Cut the french beans into 1-inch pieces. Similarly, cut the carrot very finely.
Take a flat iron tawa or a non-stick pan. Heat on low flame and add the oil and let it get little heated up.
Toss in the cumin seeds and let splutter. Add the onion and saute for a few seconds. Now, add the Ginger-Garlic paste. Fry for about 10 seconds.
After the onions got fried, add the potato cubes. Cover and cook for about 2 minutes. Now, add the capsicum, french beans, and peas.
Cover with a lid and cook until all are almost done. Lastly, add the carrot and tomato.
Cook them for 5 minutes more.
All the vegetables have to be added one by one and saute them until they get cooked.
Season with salt, red chill powder, green chilli, turmeric powder and pav bhaji masala. Give a gentle stir.
Finally, add the rice and mix well to get everything together. Put the lid back on.
Let them get cooked till the rice incorporates the flavors.
Shut off the flame in about 5 to 7 minutes.
Garnish with the chopped green coriander leaves before serving piping hot.
Tawa pulao is made with cooked rice. You have to be careful here that you don’t over cook the rice and the individual strands can be easily picked up once the rice is cool. Many times, it is a simple dish made with leftover rice that everyone actually likes. Great way to use the rice and make a tasty dish too. Tava pulao can be had with raita, a gravy curry of peas or even pickle.
You may have noticed during Indian weddings that there is a Tawa counter. This counter has a huge Tawa with an array of semi cooked vegetables lining its sides like brinjal, ladies finger, corn, tomatoes and potatoes. The flame on the tawa is turned on throughout. On demand, the chef in the counter immediately sautes the vegetables in the small well of oil in the centre and serves it to you. Tawa pulao too works in a similar way, except that you add rice at the end, completing the dish.
Though Tawa pulao tastes best when it is hot / warm, it also makes for a regular Indian tiffin item as mothers tend to use the previous day’s cooked vegetable like aaloo-gobhi-matar and saute it with a little extra spices, mix it with rice and make a home version of Tawa pulao.
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