Paav / Laadi pav / Soft white buns
In India, we are not so fond of the hard crust bread rolls but we absolutely melt down at the thought of digging in the freshly made soft paav. Paav is irreplaceable to many snacks like the refreshingly spicy Misal, the all time favourite vada-paav or a humble paav-bhaji. Whatever be the occasion, home made paavs definitely take a fraction of the guilt away because you are aware of exactly what went in the recipe. Once I got my hands on a foolproof recipe, after a couple of trial attempts resulting doughy or dense paavs, I never went back to the store bought ones. So, here is the recipe -
3 cups plain white flour
½ tsp salt2 tsp sugar
2 tsp yeast
2 tbsp of butter
2 tsp oil
½ cup Warm water
Milk 250 ml
1 tbsp Milk
1 small egg white - optional
Seeds mix – poppy, sunflower, seasame - optional
2-3 spoons butter
Take ½ cup lukewarm water and mix sugar to it. Add yeast give it a quick stir and keep aside for 5-7 mins until you get the other ingredients lined up
Mix the flour, salt, oil and butter
Add the risen yeast mixture to the flour being careful not to land the yeast directly on the salt.
Add milk as required to knead to dough into a very soft but manageable dough.Keep kneading for about 10 mins by hand or 5 mins if using a mixer
Once the dough can be handled easily, shape it into a ball and leave in a warm place in a big bowl covered with a moist tea towel. The dough will be sticky at this stage
Let the dough rise until double in size, almost 1-1.5 hr.
Once you are happy with the rise, punch out the air and knead lightly for one minute.
Shape the dough into 15 small balls and place them about an inch away on a baking tray lined with parchment paper
For the second proofing, let the bun balls rise again in the tray, covered with moist tea towel, for 30-45 mins again till the balls are approximately twice their size and almost touching each other
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees
While the oven preheats, apply a generous coat of egg/milk wash to the buns and sprinkle the seeds of your choice
Bake for about 15 mins
The baking times may vary with oven and placement of the tin, if the buns have not reached desired colour apply a dash of butter and bake again, close to the heating element for a quick 1 or 2 mins.Once out of the oven, brush with generous amounts of butte
In the image, I have used half white flour and half wheat flour - which resulted in denser Paavs. Use of all white flour results in fluffy, soft paavs.