Friday, March 7, 2008

Vangyache Bharit from Khandesh

Today's recipe is from Khandesh which is in the Northwest Maharashtra. I have never been there but read this recipe in the cookbook "Ruchira" by Mrs. Kamalabai Ogale. This book is a treasure of authentic Maharashtrian, vegetarian recipes. This cookbook is special because even my mom referred to this cookbook when I was growing up. It is one of the two cookbooks she has. (The second one is Raschandrika - for the Konkani cuisine!)

I have changed the proportion to suit my family's taste.

Khandeshi Vangyache Bharit
Adapted from Ruchira by Mrs. Kamalabai Ogale
1 Eggplant, washed, greased
1 small onion, finely chopped
salt to taste

Grind to fine paste
4-5 cloves of garlic
2-3 green chilies
1" ginger

1 tsp oil
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
A generous pinch of asafoetida

1 tbsp chopped cilantro/coriander leaves

1. Roast the eggplant till it is cooked through. Remove the peels, stem. Discard them. Mash the eggplant with a potato masher or a fork. Keep aside.

2. Heat oil in a kadai. Add all the ingredients for tempering.
3. Add chopped onion. Saute till onion is soft and the raw smell has disappeared.
4. Add green masala paste. Saute for 5 minutes.
5. Add eggplant pulp and salt to taste. Saute for another 5 minutes till a homogeneous mass is formed.
6. Cover and cook for about 2-3 minutes.
7. Switch off the gas. Garnish with cilantro while serving.
8. Serve hot with Jowar or bajra bhakri.

Making the eggplant pulp for bharit -
1. Roast the greased eggplant on the gas flame, by rotating it from time to time till the peel is completely charred. Remove the peels, stem and mash the pulp. (Read: messes up the cooking range!)

2. Pre-heat the oven 350 F. Cut eggplants in half. Bake for about 30 mins till they are cooked through. Keep an eye in between to check on the eggplant. You may need few minutes more or less.

3. Broil the eggplant similar to #2.

4. Pressure cook the eggplant just like you would any other vegetable. Peel off, discard the stems and use the pulp. But if you crave for smoky taste, then you have to roast the eggplants. I learned this method of pressure cooking from my mom-in-law.

5. Take out the Barbeque grill and just grill the eggplant. (Summer, summer, where are you?)

This post is my contribution to Pooja's Vegetable of the week: Brinjal.


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