With mayo mint and schezwan versions,Balaji vada pav has given the city's favourite fast food an international, albeit fiery twist
International chains have been selling their burgers and fries to enthusiastic Indian palates for a while now. Soon enough, their Indian counterparts decided to hop on to the fast food express by launching multi-outlet joints selling vada pavs and samosas, a la takeaway style. Using the employment card, even political outfits cashed in on this success story. Since 1978, Balaji Vada Pav has been selling the humble Indian burger though it was only until recently that they decided to upscale and expand their reach.
Balaji Vada pav
Schezwan Vada Pav, Mayo Mint Vada Pav and Vada Pav Pics/ Syed
We dropped by their Mulund outlet, which is located in the heart of the suburb. It was 11 am when we stepped in. Three attendants manning the counter had their hands full with orders. On offer were the usual favourites with a few interesting options: Vada Pav with Mayo Mint and Schezwan, Samosa, Bhajji Pav, Mirchi Bhajji and even French Fries!
Wasting no time, we decided to try the Mayo Mint version of the vada pav (Rs 10). The taste of the tangy mayonnaise added an interesting zing to the age-old version that we were familiar with. The vada pav was wolfed down in 60 seconds.
However, we soon realised that the mint part of this variation was actually a regular green chutney, which overpowered the subtle tanginess of the mayo. Fresh mint paste would have done the trick. Next up, we tried the Schezwan version of vada pav. The red sauce made for a great substitute instead of usual fiery red garlic chutney. This will please those who love their vada pav extra spicy than usual.
After our vada pav session, the Chilli Garlic Pops (Rs 30) managed to grab our eyeballs. High on salt, these deep-fried mashed potato bhajias flavoured with garlic made for a yum snack with its super crisp crust. The calorie conscious can give it a miss. After savouring the killer Schezwan spice and mint chutneys that threatened to give our tummies a wake-up call, we sipped into the natural antacid coolant Kokum sherbet (Rs 8), which was a calming end to an otherwise fiery snack encounter.
At: Near Shiv Sena office, MG Road, Mulund (W).
Log on to: www.balajivadapav.com for a the entire menu and home delivery options. Balaji delivers across Mulund, Nahur, Bhandup, Kanjurmarg, Vikhroli and Airoli depending on the order value and amount.