Tawa Pulao is a spicy and popular Indian street food dish made by cooking rice along with various vegetables and a generous dose of spices. It gets its distinctive taste from the addition of pav bhaji masala and lemon juice.
Tawa Pulao is very famous as street food in India and is especially popular in Maharashtra. Street vendors often make it on a huge flat pans called tawas in hindi, that’s where it gets its name from. At home, you can make this in any wide pan or kadhai (wok).
This pulao is very similar in flavor to pav bhaji, which is a very popular street food in Mumbai. While preparing pav bhaji, street vendors generally mix the bhaji with some rice to make tawa pulao.
To make this recipe the rice are cooked separately and then added to the mixture. To avoid making the pulao mushy, it’s best to use day old rice for this recipe, which is a great way to use leftover rice in the house.
Vegetables for tawa pulao
The pulao makes use of the same vegetables that are added in pav bhaji. The gravy is made from onions and tomatoes. Then vegetables like capsicum, potatoes, carrots, cauliflower, beans and peas are added to the rice. You can also add paneer cubes if you like.
One difference though is in the cooking & texture of the vegetables. For pav bhaji the vegetables are generally mashed, whereas they still retain some bite in tawa pulao.
One easy variation that you can do is to shallow fry the vegetables like potatoes, carrots & cauliflower instead of boiling them. Adding lightly fried and crispy vegetables to the pulao elevates it to a whole new level.
You can also serve it with kachumbar salad, a simple onion salad, yoghurt, pickle or roasted papad on the side.
To make Tawa Pulao at home follow the detailed step by step recipe with photos posted below.
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Tawa Pulao Recipe | Mumbai Tawa Pulao
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Ingredients For Tawa Pulao Recipe | Mumbai Tawa Pulao
- 1.5 Cup Plain Basmati Rice
- 1 Small Potato
- 1 Carrot
- 5-6 Green Beans
- 1/2 Cup Cauliflower Florets
- 1/4 Cup Green Peas
- 1 Medium-sized Onion
- 2 Small Tomatoes
- 1 Small Capsicum (Green Bell Pepper)
- 1-2 Green Chillies
- 1 Tablespoon Ginger Paste
- 1 Tablespoon Garlic Paste
- 1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
- 1/2 Cup Coriander Leaves
- 1 Teaspoon Cumin Seeds (Jeera)
- 1 Teaspoon Red Chilli Powder
- 1/2 Teaspoon Turmeric Powder (Haldi)
- 2 Teaspoon Pav Bhaji Masala
- 1 Teaspoon Salt, or to taste
- 2 Tablespoon Butter
- 2 Teaspoon Oil
Step By Step Instructions for Tawa Pulao Recipe | Mumbai Tawa Pulao
- First cook the plain basmati rice separately (or you can use around 4-5 cups of cooked rice) keep them aside to be used later in the recipe. Also boil the vegetables.1.5 Cup Plain Basmati Rice
- Add a little oil in a wide pan or kadai. Then add butter and melt it. The oil is added so that the butter does not burn.2 Tablespoon Butter, 2 Teaspoon Oil
- Add cumin seeds to the butter and fry then for a few seconds.1 Teaspoon Cumin Seeds (Jeera)
- When the cumin seeds start to crackle, add thinly sliced onion.1 Medium-sized Onion
- Also add finely chopped green chillies, minced ginger and garlic to the pan.1-2 Green Chillies, 1 Tablespoon Ginger Paste, 1 Tablespoon Garlic Paste
- Fry the onions till they golden brown in color.
- Add finely chopped tomatoes to the pan. Cook them till they become soft.2 Small Tomatoes
- Then add pav bhaji masala, turmeric powder (haldi), red chilli powder and salt. Mix and roast the masala for 2-3 minutes.1 Teaspoon Red Chilli Powder, 1/2 Teaspoon Turmeric Powder (Haldi), 2 Teaspoon Pav Bhaji Masala, 1 Teaspoon Salt, or to taste
- Add finely chopped capsicum (green bell pepper) to the pan. Mix and cook for 2 minutes.1 Small Capsicum (Green Bell Pepper)
- Also add half of the chopped coriander leaves. The rest will be added in the end.1/2 Cup Coriander Leaves
- Mix well and cook for a minute.
- Add the boiled vegetables to the pan. I've added around 2 cups of vegetables here which include potatoes, carrots, peas, green beans and cauliflower.1 Small Potato, 1 Carrot, 5-6 Green Beans, 1/4 Cup Green Peas, 1/2 Cup Cauliflower Florets
- Mix the vegetables with the gravy. Some people also prefer to mash the vegetables similar to pav bhaji.
- Add the boiled rice to the mixture.
- Toss the rice to coat them evenly with the masala.
- Add some finely chopped coriander leaves. Also sprinkle a few drops of lemon juice in the rice.1/2 Cup Coriander Leaves, 1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
- Mix the coriander and lemon well with the rice.
- Tawa pulao is ready. Serve it hot plain or with any raita.
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