Roasted, mashed, flavored Eggplant!! This is for all the non-Hindi speaking dwellers of the blogworld.
This one is a keeper. My husband hated eggplant, that’s probably because his mom never showed him the right way to eat it, n I loved eggplant (especially this version). Initially, I never cooked this dish, coz of the reluctance to prepare one dish for him & another for myself, n that too in a family of just he & me. After much patience & sacrifice, I one day decided to just go ahead & told myself that I dont give a hoot to what he thinks about eggplant, like it or not, I am going to make it…..(Honestly, I actually had a leftover dish of yesterday’s to fall back upon, just in case………..he throws up a fit).
I made the dish for lunch & when I asked him if he would like to taste it, he made a “yucky” face & therefore I decided not to let him go through the usual wife grumblings, & served him the leftover dish while I myself relished the bharta.
For the evening at tea, I made myself a crunchy toast & spread a spoonful of bharta (bharta actually means anything in mashed form) & was sitting & muching away, relishing every bite of it. All this while I was unaware that two eyes were watching me with a certain amount of “greedy piggy” looks, n then I heard a voice saying “mujhe bhi ek bite chahiye” (I too want a bite of it). Without a word & some astonishment, I handed over whatever was left in my hand, only to find him taking not just a bite of the toast, but the whole thing was satisfactorily devoured, & after a moment, I heard the same voice asking me “mujhe aur chahiye” (I want more).
I cant tell you how satisfied I was with my accomplishment. I made him eat & like, something which he probably hadnt touched all throughout…..& my final reward was, one day, very soon, when he asked me to guess something that he wants to eat……something which had peas in it, I guessed all the dishes except this one, coz I never thought he would ask me for this!!!
Now before you feel like kicking me on my back, I’ll come to the recipe –
2 medium sized – round egg plants / baingan (you have to choose the light weight ones – the
heavier ones are loaded with seeds)
1/2 cup – boiled green peas
3/4 big onions – chopped, but not very fine, n neither very chunky
4 medium tomatoes – pureed
1 tbsp – grated ginger
1 tsp – grated garlic
1 tsp – dried fenugreen leaves / kasuri methi (optional)
1/2 tsp – cumin seeds / jeera
1 tsp – red chilli powder, preferably use one like deghi mirch to give a nice red colour, n add
more if you prefer it hot
1 tbsp – garam masala powder
1 tsp – amchur / dried mango powder (if you dont have it, use lime juice about a tsp full)
a good amount of corriander leaves to garnish
On the gas, roast the eggplant. You have to turn them around frequently to have the flesh cooked evenly. The skin should be charred & when you poke the flesh with a fork, it should go in easily.
Take them off the gas & immediately put them into a air tight dish. After this, the peel will come off easily.
Cut off the stalk of the eggplant & mash the flesh well. I dont throw away the stalks but add them in, to chew upon them.!!! Nice thought ??
Keep this separately.
To save upon time, I make the masala on one side & roast the eggplants on the other one.
Now for the masala –
In a pan, add some oil. Add the cumin seeds, wait for them to sputter & add the onions
Add the ginger & the garlic at this stage.
When the onions turn a good pink in colour add the tomato puree. Cook till the masala leaves the sides of the pan & the oil starts leaving it.
Now first add the red chilli mix well.
Add the garam masala, salt, amchur & the dried fenugreek leaves
let the masalas fry for half a minute.
To this add the mashed pulp of eggplant. Using a masher blend the pulp into the masala very well. It should resemble a fine smooth paste.
Add the boiled peas. Mix well
Garnish with green chillies & corriander
Serve hot with parathas, rotis or plain rice, or as I mentioned earlier, use it as a spread for a toast!!
Another point – while making the masala, if you add half a capsicum, it gives an extra flavor.