Misal Pav Recipe | How to make Misal Pav [Video]

Misal Pav Recipe. This video shows how to make popular Maharashtrian spicy vegan curry called Misal. Misal is a curry made with sprouts and coconut that is topped with Sev or Mixture and served with Pav.

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Spicy Maharashtrian Misal Pav

Bangalore has the weirdest weather of all places I've been to. It can be bright and sunny one day and pouring cats and dogs the next. We ran through October like it was Summer, barely a hint of chill in the air and the Sun was all powered on. And then we got loads of rain, just when I was ready to get those light trousers and leather footwear out !!  Finally, since mid-November, the chill has been setting in and it feels like Winter, at least in the evenings. The days are still as hot as Summer.

When it's cold outside, I want to stay cozy inside and eat warm spicy curries while lazily watching reruns of F.R.I.E.N.D.S. And this Misal Pav totally fits the bill. It is spicy, hearty and best of all, you can top it up with awesome crunchy things.

When I think of Misal Pav, it takes me back to my college days. Thursday night dinner in hostel was Misal Pav and it was actually horrible. If one were to eat that Misal Pav, one would never ever dare to eat one again. I don't know how the cooks in the hostel mess could mess up something so simple, but they managed to put up an unappetizing dish in the name of Misal Pav. It was only when I ate Misal Pav in a Maharashtrian restaurant that I came to appreciate the flavor and texture of this spicy vegan affair.

Spicy Maharashtrian Misal Pav

Spicy Maharashtrian Misal Pav

Spicy Maharashtrian Misal Pav

Misal pav is a simple yet complex dish. It is simple to cook, but the flavors are complex, the textures are complex. Misal consists of 3 main things:

  • Usal - Usal is a quick curry made from sprouts. Sprouts are boiled with turmeric, salt and a little bit of asafoetida. You can add other spices to usal when you want to have it plain, but when you are cooking usal for Misal Pav, it is best to keep it simple. Generally, moth bean sprouts or matki sprouts are used for Misal Pav, but if you don't have moth beans, just use mung beans or any other sprouts that you can.
  • Kat - The spicy coconut based curry that dominates the flavor of Misal Pav is called the Kat. Kat is made by grinding together spices, coconut, onion and tomatoes and boiling them until the flavor develops. I have used Kokum as the souring agent in the Kat, you can use tamarind pulp instead. Kokum helps in giving a darker color to the Kat, that you may miss if you use tamarind. If you have access to Misal masala powder, then you can use that instead of the whole spices I have used.
  • Sev/Mixture/Farsan - This is the fun part of Misal Pav. Misal is always topped with crunchy spicy mixture. You can use any topping of your choice - papdi, ghatia, sev, chiwda etc. The more you add, the better it tastes. Only thing to remember is to add this at the end, while serving, else your mixture will get soggy and loose its texture and flavor.
Serve Misal with toasted Pav or regular bread. And always serve it piping hot!!

Spicy Maharashtrian Misal Pav

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Video Recipe


Misal Pav Recipe | How to make Misal Pav

Spicy Maharashtrian Misal PavMisal is a popular spicy vegan Maharashtrian curry that is served with Pav bread. Misal is made with sprouts and coconut and is topped with Sev or Mixture.

Recipe Type:  Curry
Cuisine:            Maharashtrian, Indian
Prep Time:     15 minutes
Cook time:     45 minutes
Total time:     60 minutes
Yield:                Serves 2-3


For the Usal:

2 cups Sprouts
2 Tbsp Oil
1 tsp Mustard Seeds
0.5 tsp Turmeric Powder
A pinch of Asafoetida (Hing)
Salt to taste
Water as required

For the Kat:

1 large Onion
1 large Tomato
0.5 cup grated Coconut
2 Tbsp Oil
1 Clove
1" Cinnamon
0.5 tsp Pepper
1-2 Bay leaves
1 tsp Coriander Powder
1 tsp Cumin Powder
1 Tbsp chopped Garlic
1 Tbsp chopped Ginger
2 tsp Red Chilli Powder
0.5 tsp Turmeric Powder
3-4 Kokum peels or 1 tsp Tamarind Pulp
1-2 cups Water
Salt to taste

To assemble the Misal:

1 Onion, finely chopped
1 Tomato, finely chopped
2 cups Sev or Mixture
0.5 cups Coriander leaves, finely chopped


To make the Usal:

1. Heat oil in a pan and add mustard seeds.
2. After the mustard seeds splutter, add the sprouts, turmeric powder, salt, asafoetida (hing) and 1 cup water. Cover and cook until the sprouts are cooked.
3. Grind the clove, cinnamon, pepper, ginger, garlic, coriander powder and cumin powder into a coarse masala without any water.

To make the Kat:

4. Soak the kokum peels in 0.5 cup warm water and keep aside.
5. Heat oil in a pan and add the coarsely ground masala.
6. Saute the masala until fragrant, then add chopped onion.
7. Once the onions are slightly browned, add in chopped tomato and grated coconut.
8. Fry for 2-3 minutes, then grind everything to a smooth paste with a little water.
9. Pour back the masala into the pan.
10. Add in turmeric powder, red chilli powder, salt, soaked kokum peels or tamarind pulp and 1 cup water. You can remove the kokum peels after a while if the gravy has reached the sourness you desire.
11. Allow it to come to a boil and let it boil for 8-10 minutes.
12. Adjust seasoning if required. Add more water for a looser consistency. If you want a thicker consistency, boil it longer.

To assemble the Misal Pav:

13. To serve the Misal Pav, add the usal in a bowl.
14. Pour over the spicy kat.
15. Top with finely chopped onion, tomatoes and coriander leaves.
16. Top with sev or mixture and serve with toasted pav.

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Spicy Maharashtrian Misal Pav

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