Vada Pav Making.
Vada Pav Making : Vada pav has derived its name from Marathi language. Sometimes it is spelled as ‘wada pav’ or ‘vada paav’ or ‘vada pao’. It is a vegetarian fast food dish native to the Indian state of Maharashtra. Apart from Maharashtra, in other regions of India, vada pav is widely known as a popular street food snack.
It is a simple creation of ‘vada’ that involves a deep fried potato and chickpeas patty with some coriander and spices, along with ubiquitous white bread rolls called ‘pav’. This food item was actually originated as a cheap street food in Mumbai, but now a days, it is offered in all street-side stalls, food chains and restaurants throughout India.
Going by literal meaning, the Marathi compound word vada means fritter, and pav is a variant of Portuguese word “pao” which means sweetened bread.
How to Make Vada Pav.
Boiled mashed potatoes are spiced, most commonly with red chillies, garlic, asafoetida, turmeric powder, mustard seeds and garlic, but the spices may vary from place to place as per regional choice. The mass is then coated in gram flour batter and deep fried to make fritters. The resultant fritter is served sandwiched in between a pair of round shaped bread bun, usually accompanied by one red chutney made of tamarind pulp and another common green chutney made of coriander leaves and lime juice.
Vada Pav History.
Food etymology history says that vada pav recipe was first devised by Mr. Ashok Vaidya who was just a common man. He used to sell street food from a stall beside Dadar rail station in Mumbai in the year of 1971 on a Thela (a makeshift stall) next to Platform No.1 of Dadar Station.
Now his stall is being operated by his son Narendra Vaidya and his partner Abhijeet Samel. Despite the ethno-centrism in Maharashtra in particular, vada paav is claimed to be a part of the culture of Marathis despite sandwich (bread and potato) being western in style. It is now offered at street stalls, cafes and restaurants throughout India.
Specialty of Vada Pav in Mumbai.
Mumbai offers some hygienic options for the finicky vada pav lover. The closest version to that on the street are the hygienic Jumbo King and Parleshwar Vada pav Samrat in Vile Parle, but there are a bunch of posh places across the city that offer souped-up versions. An executive chef, whose favourite vada pav wala is the one at Dadar, told that ‘Social’ serves their potato mix crispy with a crumb-fried batter, accompanied by a mayo-garlic chutney and elements of pickle, all served in a small pita bread.
The 35-year old vada pav stall at Dadar’s Kirti College Vada Pav Making, run by the genial Ashok Thakur, gets everyone’s vote for making the best vada pav in the city. Popular movie stars like Jackie Shroff and Madhuri Dixit were also amongst his clientele, and day or night, there is always a bevy of people hanging around outside the stall for a bite, but vada pav-philes (including celebrities, business tycoons and politicians) also swear by Aaram Vada pav opposite Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus.
Vile Parle’s Shivaji Vada pav deserves special mention. Its Schezwan version is a huge hit for students of nearby Mithibai and NM colleges. Samrat and Anand Vada pav stalls nearby have their own fan following too. Shree Krishna Sweets at Bandra East near Guru Nanak hospital are also a favourites of many.
Dutta Snacks Center in Panvel is a popular stop for people en-route to Lonavala and the ghats. They even have a counter within Bharat Diamond Bourse Canteen in BKC. Shree Samarth near the Shiv Sena Bhavan in Dadar West has quite the fan following as well.
Amost every railway station has a vada pav thelawala, because it is perfectly portable food and great for people on the go (which basically sums up Mumbai’s fast life). Graduate Vada pav making outside Byculla Station is particularly popular, but they do not disclose their secret recipe of making Vada pav.
Various famous Indian food television shows have featured vada pav as one of the top ten best-selling street food snack items available in India.