Thursday, November 25, 2010

Roasted Eggplant Bharit - A Yogurt Based Eggplant Dish

I remember this dish perfectly, my grandma used to make it often. Today, as I become more aware of various world cuisines, I am convinced that this is a wonderful way to eat eggplant. Okay, so this dish needs raw onions. So if you are not a big fan of raw onions, this dish is not for you. Note that white, mild onions are the best for this recipe. Also, this dish has a yogurt base which complements the onions and roasted eggplant really well. It pairs nicely with fresh phulkas. I think it will also work as a dip for baked whole wheat pita chips.

You will need:

1 roasted eggplant with the skin and most seeds removed. The browned and roasted flesh of the eggplant should be mashed. (I normally apply a coat of vegetable oil to the eggplant and then place it in the broiler. It roasts really well. The key, is to turn the eggplant every five minutes or so to roast it uniformly. When the eggplant is evenly roasted, the inner flesh will separate from the skin easily.)

1/2 a medium sized onion cut not too coarsely. (I used a red onion in this recipe. I would recommend a white onion. I did not have one at hand when I made this dish. I would also cut the amount of onion if the eggplant is small to about a quarter.)

1 tbsp chopped cilantro.

1/2 tsp of brown sugar.
salt to taste.
1/2-3/4 cup yogurt.

For the ghee (canola oil can be used as a substitute for ghee) tadka:

1 tsp ghee.
1 small green chilli.
1/4 tsp asafoetida.
1/2 tsp cumin seeds.

Mix the mashed eggplant and chopped onions in a serving bowl. Add the cilantro. Mix thoroughly.

Now, add the yogurt, salt and sugar. Mix and keep aside. In a copper bottomed, large sputtering spoon (a small kadhai will also do), heat the ghee (or oil). When hot, add the cumin seeds. Once they crackle add the asafoetida and green chili.

Now, pour this spice and chili mixture on the eggplant. Be careful because the ghee is hot and the yogurt is at room temperature. Some ghee may splash outward. Stir and serve immediately.


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