Baingan Bhartha

Smoked Aubergine in light spices

Baingan Bhartha is a fabulous summer time dish as it can be eaten hot or cold. I love getting it out of the fridge the day after it’s been cooked and having it cold on a thick slice of toast. It’s really yummy. My kids who always swore they would never eat that ‘slimy stuff’ had it many times during their childhood, unaware that they were eating Aubergine. I disguised it well with the other vegetables and spices I added to it. Give it a go – you won’t look back.

Ingredients

2 medium aubergine

2 large potatoes – peeled and cut into wedges

2 tbsp good quality oil/ghee/butter

1 large onion – sliced

4 cloves garlic – finely chopped

1 x 3 inch piece of ginger -finely chopped

2 green chillies finely chopped or half teaspoon red chilli powder

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

1 teaspoon turmeric

1 teaspoon of dried fenugreek leaves

1 heaped tablespoon of tomato puree or half tin tomatoes

Handful of roughly chopped coriander leaves

Salt to taste

Method

1) Brush the aubergine skin with oil and smoke on a low naked flame turning it over using tongs (see video)

2) Once the aubergine skin starts to flake all over and has softened on the inside remove from the flames and allow them to cool

3) In a heavy based pan make your Tadka (see recipe for Tadka)

4) Once the oil rises to the surface you can add the potato wedges, mix well and cover and cook on a low heat until they are partly cooked.

5) Once the aubergine has cooled, peel it and mash it using a potato masher or your hands (it’s quite fun squishing it with your hands) and add to the pan stirring well.

6) Cover and cook until the potatoes are almost cooked through then add the peas, cover and cook for another 5 minutes.

7) Finish the dish with freshly chopped coriander.

Serve with fresh hot chapatti or naan – or even on a slice of toast!

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