Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Vaangi Bhaat - Maharashtrian Eggplants Rice

Though "Vaangi Bhaat" sounds Marathi, I have seen its South Indian rendition more often using MTR Vangi Bhath Spice Mix. However, we make Vaangi Bhaat using Goda Masala at home. This is a variant of our traditional Maharashtrian Masalay Bhaat.

Vaangi Bhaat
Eggplant Pulao
1 cup Basmati Rice, Rinsed
salt to taste
1 tsp. sugar or jaggery
5 small eggplants, cut into 6 slices each
1/2 tsp. mild chili powder for color
1 tsp. coriander powder

1/2 tbsp. oil
1/2 tsp. mustard seeds
1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
1/4 tsp. asafetida
2 cloves
4 black peppercorn
1 bay leaf
12 raw cashews, halved
1 tbsp.. goda masala

1 tbsp. ghee/clarified butter/toop

2 tbsp. minced cilantro
2 tbsp. freshly scraped coconut

Ghee/Clarified Butter
Lemon Wedges

1. Pick, Rinse Basmati Rice. Set aside to drain till ready to use.
2. Slice each eggplant into 6 pieces. Keep them in water till ready to use.
3. Heat oil in a heavy bottomed saucepan. Add all the spices.
4. As they sizzle, add cashews. Roast them for a minute.
5. Add goda masala. Roast for 1 minute.
6. Add drained eggplants. Sauté for a minute.
7. Add drained rice. Sauté for another minute.
8. Add all the remaining spice powders.
9. Add 2 1/2 cups water, salt and sugar or jaggery. Bring to boil.
10. Switch gas to low. Cover and let it cook on low flame till each rice grain is cooked.
11. Now, drizzle some ghee around.
12. Switch off the gas.
13. Keep covered for 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork, making sure that the aroma of ghee is mixed with the rice.
14. Garnish with coconut and cilantro.
15. Serve with lemon wedges and more clarified butter, as needed.

Note -
1. Omit ghee/clarified butter to make it a Vegan version.
2. Use old Basmati so the rice doesn't too mushy and each grain is separate.
3. Instead of eggplants, use fresh green peas to make matar bhaat, or tondli/tindora to make tondli bhaat.

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