Baingan Bharta literally means mashed eggplant. A widely prepared dish in Northern India, the best ones are available in Punjab. Usually, baingan bharta is made over a flame – using a tandoor, gas flame, or oven. At times, people use microwave as well. But what do you do if don’t have any of these in your kitchen?
Yes, this is a version without a flame. I agree that smoked brinjal smells heavenly and takes the dish to a whole new level. But this modified recipe is good too! Here, I don’t have a flame gas – It is instead a hot plate. So, I used my sister’s recipe (who was incidentally cooking bharta like this when she was in Sydney using basic kitchen tools).
I tried it today for our lunch and it was awesome. And so here is what I did:
1 big brinjal / eggplant
1 large onion – chopped finely (you can even grate it or mixer it if you don’t like chopping onions)
1 medium tomato – finely chopped (again, if needed u can purée it)
2 small green chillies
3 garlic cloves – peeled
1/2 teaspoon ginger paste
1/2 teaspoon garlic paste
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon chilli powder (adjust according to taste)
1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
1/2 teaspoon coriander powder
Salt to taste
2 tablespoon oil
Coriander leaves for garnish
- Cut brinjal into half. Confirm no black region is there or discard the black region. Use whole brinjal only if it’s all clear. Fill the halves with water to cover them. Add peeled garlic cloves to this water. Pressure-cook for 2 to 3 whistles.
- Once it has cooled, drain the water. Peel off the brinjal skin. Mash the skinless brinjal and garlic together. Set aside.
- Heat oil in a pan. Once it is hot, add chillies and fry till it changes colour.
- Add chopped / grated onions and fry till it turns pink.
- Add ginger and garlic paste and fry till the raw smell vanishes.
- Add the tomatoes and cook till oil separates.
- Add all the spice powders including salt and give it a stir mixing everything together evenly.
- Now add the set-aside mashed brinjal and garlic mix to this and give it a stir to mix evenly with spices.
- Take it off the stove. Garnish with coriander leaves.
Serve hot with roti or with dal-rice.
And this is how the final product turned out!