Baingan bhartha is a popular north Indian dish that is mostly served with warm rotis or paratha. Baingan is the Hindi name for eggplant. Traditionally eggplants are fire roasted until the skin is charred. But now a days, I roast it in the oven. To get the fire roasted smoky flavor, some times I will place the oven roasted eggplants over the fire on my stove. But this has to be done with caution in order to avoid burning your hands. Also you have to ensure the juices from the eggplant does not spoil the stove.
- 1 large eggplant (about one and a half pound)
- 1 teaspoon canola or olive Oil
- 1 tablespoon cooking oil
- ¼ teaspoon mustard seed
- 1 cup chopped red onion
- 3 garlic cloves finely chopped
- 1 inch piece ginger finely chopped
- 1 cup chopped tomato
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon coriander powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin powder
- ½ teaspoon garam masala
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
- ¼ cup milk or coconut milk (can be almond, soy milk as well)
- Coriander leaves/cilantro for garnishing
- Salt to taste
- Pre heat oven to 375 F. Rub eggplant generously with oil and prick with a fork on several areas. Wrap eggplant in an aluminum foil and roast for about one hour or until the skin is wrinkled.
- Let cool and peel the skin off. Chop eggplant roughly (since it can be mashed with the back of a spoon, no need to spend too much time chopping into fine pieces) and set aside.
- Add cooking oil to a saucepan and add mustard seeds. Once mustard seed start spluttering, add onion and fry until transparent. Add garlic and ginger and fry until they are browned.
- Add chopped tomatoes, chili powder, turmeric powder and cover and cook until tomatoes comes to sauce consistency. Add little water at a time to make sure tomatoes does not get burned.
- Add eggplant and add about ½ cup water and cover and cook on low flame for about 15 minutes. Mash eggplant with the back of the spoon a little bit. Add garam masala and milk and cook until eggplant is thick and soft.
- Serve warm with rice or any bread variety
- Yields: 4 servings as a side dish.