Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Achari Baigan / Eggplant / Brinjal | Aubergine in Pickling Spices

The eggplant is as versatile as it is delicious. With the summer crop of fresh tender eggplants coming in in the farmers market, I am raring to try so many lovely recipes that I have collected. I always make an eggplant pickle every summer - in fact we are enjoying last years batch presently, and Eggplant Pakoras (fritters)! Both are simply divine.

This recipe is of eggplant cooked in pickling spices and imitates the idea of an eggplant pickle. It stops short a pickle in terms of cooking time, spicing intensity, and of course shelf life. But its a relatively instant treat if you are craving a very flavourful and lip-smacking treat. I have made a typically North Indian version of this vegetable, more particularly as it is found in a kitchen in in Uttar Pradesh!!

1 large eggplant, sliced
1 medium onion, chopped fine
3 medium tomatoes, sliced
2 green chilies, minced
1/2 tsp ginger minced
1/2 tsp garlic, chopped
3 tbsp oil
1/4 tap hing (asafoetida)
1/4 tsp kalonji (nigella seeds)
1/2 tsp zeera (cumin seeds)
1/4 tsp rai (mustard seeds)
1/4 tsp saunf (fennel seeds)
1/8 tsp methi (fenugreek seeds)
1/2 tsp haldi (turmeric)
Salt to taste
1/2 tap amchur (raw mango powder)

  1. Slice the eggplant lengthwise, and then into two inch pieces. Set aside.
  2. Heat two tablespoons oil in a pan. Add the sliced eggplant and stir fry on high heat till all the pieces are coated with oil.
  3. Reduce the heat and continue to stir fry until the eggplant pieces are cooked and tender. Turn off the heat.
  4. In a separate sauce pan, heat the remaining one tablespoon of oil.
  5. Add the mustard seeds, once they begin to pop, add the cumin, then the nigella, and fennel sheets.
  6. Finally add the fenugreek seeds, and follow immediately with the ginger and garlic. 
  7. Throw in the chopped onions, and fry on a medium heat until the onions are transparent.
  8. Next add the tomatoes and green chiles, and cook until their juice dries up. 
  9. Add the turmeric and amchur, and then stir in the cooked eggplant.
  10. Allow the eggplant to steep in the tomato spiced mix for at least 15 minutes on a low heat.
Serve hot with warm chappatis, parathas, or pitas.

Vegan Recipe

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  1. Delicious curry...I'm sure it will be yummy with a bowl of curd rice too.

  2. Slurp,mouthwatering here, feel like having that whole bowl..

  3. looks so delicious and wonderful !!

  4. Yum, love your spices and gravy that baigan go in :)

  5. Lovely eggplants, so many ingredients that I don't know of, or know very little... like the mango powder... But I would love to eat them!



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