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Pav or Indian Dinner Rolls is a very popular, egg-free bread that is soft and fluffy and enjoyed with the street foods in India. Pav became famous from Mumbai where it is known as Ladi Pav and it is believed that Portuguese introduced it in Mumbai. Pav means a quarter and ladi means ‘ slab’, it is the way in which the bread is arranged while baking. Two of the most loved Indian street food Pav Bhaji and Vada Pav can’t exist without the Pav!! A true Mumbaikar(people who are from Mumbai, India)or someone who has tested Mumbai’s Pav can only tell the real charm of these two dishes that come with it. We love Mumbai ‘s Pav and you can’t get the same Pav in India in other cities. Years back when the baking bug bit me I tried few recipes for pav from net. But my pav sometimes came dry and sometimes hard, since there was ample Pav bread available in Mumbai so I gave up with my trials. Then when I was doing my baking course there I learned to make Pav bread the same as we get from Mumbai’s bakeries. Baking is art and science combined together, requires a lot of patience. And if you are into bread baking you know what I mean. In my baking course I learned few tips and tricks and a visit to a nearby bakery and then also after few trials I can now make soft, fluffy and airy Pav bread and I make any time as per my convenience. But we still miss Mumbai’s bakery Pav!!
Making Pav just like any bread needs the right measurement of ingredients and a lot of kneading, right proofing time and baking temperature and time. The Pav dough is very sticky and needs a lot of muscle power 💪 if you are kneading it by hand so many people avoid making it at home but trust me it is worth all the effort. If you have stand-mixer then it is quite easy, dough kneading doesn’t require much effort. Pav bread commercially is made from all-purpose flour(maida) but when making it at home you can use 1:1 ratio of whole wheat flour and all-purpose flour. It will be a little dense as compared to the all-purpose flour Pav. We have to increase water content by 10-20 ml in whole wheat pav as whole wheat flour absorbs more water and it depends upon the kind of whole flour you are using. In this post, I am covering pav recipe using all-purpose flour.
To get perfectly baked Pavs pls keep in mind the below pointers..
- Measure your ingredients accurately.
- Don’t use the old yeast. Prefer buying these small packs of yeast instead of buying the bottles if you are not very regular at baking. If using dry yeast, activate it properly.
- Knead the dough well till it is smooth and soft.
- Keep in warm place for proofing and check for proofing by doing the dimple test. To check whether the dough is proofed, press the dough lightly with a finger, it will form a dimple/indent. If it rises back the dough needs little more proofing time, if it doesn’t bounce back, the dough is proofed.
- The baking temperature should be as per the recipe and don’t open the oven door again and again to check. For Pav, baking time is 8 minutes so you can check your bread after 8 minutes.
Let’s start making Pav.. This is going to be long post. Please read the steps carefully.
Take 4 cups of All-Purpose flour in a bowl. You can take 50:50 all-purpose and whole wheat flour.
I have used Instant Yeast for proofing. Instant yeast can be directly added to the flour. No need to activate it. You can use active dry yeast also, but the dry yeast has to be activated before adding and to work in the dough.
Take 260 ml of water, to it add sugar, salt and yeast. You can use milk also for kneading the dough. Many times I also use the whey that is left after making Paneer from milk. The whey is very nutritious and can be used in soups, making curries and lentils or kneading the dough. Breads come out very nice soft and pillowy whenever I use it.
Make a well in the center of flour and add the liquid. Start kneading the dough. It will be sticky.
Add soft butter and knead again to a soft and smooth dough. You can use a scraper to scrape off the dough that sticks to hands. You can add some flour while kneading but don’t add too much as flour ratio will increase and you will get dry pav. Keep on kneading the dough it will eventually become smooth and soft.
Keep the dough in a well-oiled bowl, cover with a cling film. Keep the dough to rise. It will double up and will take around an hour depending on the weather.
Once the dough has doubled, punch and deflate it, knead lightly and form a log. Divide the dough into 12-14 equal pieces, arrange in baking pan(square one preferred). Keep some space between the dough balls as these will rise.
There is another way of lining the dough in baking pan. Divide the dough into 4 portions of 100gms each. Roll each portion and make an indention in the center, dividing the dough into four portions, each mini portion is known as Pav. Use whichever way is convenient for you.
Keep the divided dough balls for the second rise. This takes another 1 hr. The pav balls will rise and increase in size. Start the oven and preheat it at 420°F or 200°C. Spray some water on the top before putting in the oven. This will prevent the drying of the top. Bake the pav bread for 8-10 minutes. The top will become light brown in color. When done, the bread sounds hollow when you tap on it. Brush butter on the pavs. When you take out the pavs the top may seem a bit hard, but don’t worry it will become soft once the pav cools down. Transfer to cooling rack and let it cool down before using.
Pav-How to make Mumbai Pav
- All-Purpose Flour-400 g/ 3 1/4 cups
- Water- 265 ml/1 1/4 cup
- Instant Yeast- 7 g/1Tsp
- Butter- 30 g/ 2Tbsp
- Sugar- 6 g/1Tsp
- Salt-7 g/ 1Tsp
- Sieve together flour and salt, in a kneading bowl. Make a well in the center, mix yeast and sugar in water and add to the flour slowly, start kneading the dough.
- Add soft butter and keep kneading till you get a smooth and soft dough.
- Once you get soft and smooth dough, keep it in a well-oiled bowl, cover with a cling film. Keep the dough to rise, for first proofing.
- Once the dough has doubled, punch and deflate it, knead lightly and form a log. Divide the dough into 12-15 equal pieces, arrange in baking pan(square one preferred). Keep some space between the dough balls as these will rise.
- It will take another hour for the second proofing. Depending on the weather, check the rolls after 30 mins, if the rolls are proofed pre-heat the oven to 400°F or 200°C.
- Once the rolls are proofed baked at 400°F or 200°C for 12-15 mins.
- Pav bread will bake to beautiful light brown color. Take out of the oven and cool on wire rack.
Pav bread pairs up beautifully with different dishes!! Pav-Bhaji, Vada Pav, Misal Pav, Bhajjiya Pav, Pav Bhurji, Bun Maska and many more yummy dishes…My mouth is watering and having the temptation to eat any of the dishes or all of the dishes if I get a chance. Will be gradually updating the recipes for each one of these.
Do make this wonderful bread called Pav, and enjoy with any side dish of your choice!! Do follow the blog to get updates on new posts. Pin the recipe if you want to make it later, and whenever you make any of my recipes do post a pic on my FB page, tag me on Instagram or Twitter.
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