Thrifty Deskfest #2: Bread Bhurji

Miss Thrifty4 January 16, 2013

 So what’s in today’s tiffin?

deskfest tuesday tiffin

Bread bhurji, with a nice cup of tea and a couple of satsumas for after:

bread bhurji breakfast

It is the best thrifty breakfast I have ever eaten at my desk – and it only takes 10 minutes to make.

I was looking for some traditional tiffin recipes online when I came across this one (here, on the excellent Tarla Dalal site) and decided to give it a go. Basically, it’s Indian eggy bread – but with yoghurt and spices instead of egg. Sounds odd; works brilliantly.

You soak the bread in the yoghurt, so this recipe is also another great way to use up an old loaf.

One tip: chop the bread, chop the onion and prep the yoghurt the night before, so that come the morning all you’ll have to do is sling the stuff into a pan and wait for it to brown.

I used up some more of that muesli bread; I also used a cup of Alpro soya pouring yoghurt, £1 for 750ml. It’s a great breakfast if you have a dairy-free diet, but otherwise, you can opt for the cheapest yoghurt the supermarket does, which currently comes in at 65p for 500g at all the major supermarkets. Clearly there is some kind of budget yoghurt cartel. But as you can see, gram for gram there isn’t much difference in price between the dairy and soya versions.

Curry leaves: I found a random, unlabelled bag of these in the Morrisons fruit & veg aisle, for pennies. I don’t think people knew what they were. I’ve kept them in the freezer ever since, and dip in as needed.

Finally, I’ve altered the recipe from the original, which had the ginger going in before the onion. When I did this, it charred.

deskfest tuesday

Thrifty Deskfest #2: Bread Bhurji


Prep time: 

Cook time: 

Total time: 

  • 5 large / 10 small slices of bread
  • 1 cup plain yoghurt
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • ¼ red or green chilli, chopped (optional: vary the amount depending on how spicy you like your breakfasts...)
  • 3 curry leaves (optional: it isn't the end of the world if you don't have them)
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1 onion
  • 1 tsp vegetable oil
  • Handful of fresh mint or coriander, to garnish
  1. In a large bowl (larger than you think you'll need), stir the turmeric into the yoghurt.
  2. Cut the bread into large chunks, and mix with the turmeric/yoghurt mixture.
  3. Slice the onion and chop the ginger.
  4. Heat the oil in a frying pan with the cumin seeds, until the seeds crackle.
  5. Add the curry leaves and chilli, if using, and cook for a few seconds.
  6. Add the onion and cook on a low heat until the onion begins to brown.
  7. Add the ginger. Keep stirring.
  8. After 30 seconds, add the bread mixture. Stir occasionally, until the bread browns.
  9. Serve hot, garnished with the mint or coriander.


bread bhurji

 UPDATE: Here’s a quick tip. Be careful if you are making this with economy bread. Once soaked in the yoghurt, it sort of dissolves in the pan. It’s fine to use economy bread, but I would dip each chunk in the yoghurt individually, then set it in the pan. Otherwise you’ll end up with soggy bready mush, as I did the other night. It still tastes delicious, but doesn’t look quite as swell…

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4 Responses to “Thrifty Deskfest #2: Bread Bhurji

Lucy says:

Yum. Looks delicious. This is definitely inspiring me to break away from the boring old toast & marmite!

January 17, 2013 at 12:55 pm

Sandy says:

Looks yummy, maybe for lunch, though. Don’t think I’d fancy that for breakfast. I can only just do porridge!

January 17, 2013 at 9:21 pm

Shilpa says:

My own take on this which is also suitable when using economy bread is as follows: Slice or simply tear leftover bread by hand into medium sized chunks. Heat oil in a pan, add asafoetida (if available) mustard and cumin seeds. Wait for these to crackle. Add some curry leaves (again if available). Add diced onion, ginger, garlic and green chilies. Saute for some time. Add diced tomatoes and turmeric(adding turmeric at this stage prevents it from burning). Cover and cook for 2-3 mts. Add salt, bread chunks and 1-2 tbsp of plain yogurt (if you have an almost empty yogurt container, just add 5-6 tbsp of plain water , swish and use this watery yogurt mixture instead, prevents wasting yogurt). Cover and cook till bread is moist but firm. Serve and garnish with coriander if desired.

Turmeric, mustard seeds, asafoetida are optional, you don’t have to buy these if you don’t routinely stock these at home. Also if you don’t have any yogurt use juice of half a lime/ lemon instead.

March 26, 2013 at 12:40 pm

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