It’s time for Lina’s April challenge . This time Lina had a rather unusual challenge for us, we had to select a random number, from 1-30 , upon selecting a certain number she would reveal the dish alloted for that particular number . I selected the number 12.
Bagara baingan it was for me ! For those of you are not very familiar with this dish , it is a very delicious dish from Hyderabad, India. Baingan – Eggplant/ Aubergines, are mainly known as Brinjal in India. I don’t really know why I haven’t prepared this dish before, but thanks to Lina’s challenge I will be making this more often. I really love how the combination of peanuts, sesame seeds and coconut come together and impart this rich nutty flavor to the dish, making it quite unique. The eggplants are traditionally deep fried, but shallow frying works well too. The roasted eggplants are then simmered in a spiced, tangy , nutty and creamy gravy. It not only taste delicious, but looks beautiful as well. Bagara baingan is mostly served with biryani or bagara rice. We had it with plain rice, however this would also pair well with chapatis or any other flat bread. This also makes for a really nice vegetarian party dish, your guests will love it!
I visited Washington DC last month for the cherry blossom festival , it wasn’t peak bloom , but good enough for pics though ! My then virtual friend, Soniya had invited us over , since it was spring break as well , I thought it would be a good idea meeting her.
So after chilling out a bit after arriving at her place , we headed to the grocery store , bought these baby eggplants and got to cooking!! Yes I know weird right?! But we met through a foodie group so definitely there had to be some cooking done 😛
This dish turned out so amazing , everyone loved it! It’s a fairly simple recipe to execute. I sourced this recipe from Rama Devi Vishwanatham who had shared it on our foodie group. She learnt this from her good friend Sailaja, so big thanks to you too Sailaja for your lovely recipe 🙂
Sharing some images of the beautiful cherry blossoms . I forgot to carry my camera along ( I know , sigh!! ) Hope you still enjoy the pics 🙂
The judge for this wonderful contest is Jhuls@ The not so creative cook. Let’s begin with the recipe , do try it guys , you will love it 🙂
Small eggplants -10- 12 (washed & quartered, keeping the stem intact )
2 medium tomatoes, chopped into big cubes
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 teaspoon methi ( fenugreek) seeds
2 small onions, finely chopped
3-4 tablespoon tamarind paste (Adjust according to your taste)
1/2 tablespoon red chilli powder
1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon ginger garlic paste
1/4 cup dhania (cilantro) leaves
1/4 teaspoon Garam masala powder
Salt to taste
To be ground to a paste :
1/2 cup each Peanuts , sesame seeds & dry coconut grated
1.Dry roast the peanuts and sesame seeds separately and let them cool. Grind it together with grated coconut into a fine paste. Keep aside.
2.Heat 4 Tbsp. oil in a wide pan. Add the eggplant and cook on low heat covered for a couple of minutes. Remove and keep them aside.
3. Add 2 more tbsp. oil to the pan, add mustard seeds, cumin seeds and methi seeds.
4.Once they splutter, add chopped onions to it.
5.When the onions are almost soft & translucent, add ginger garlic paste and sauté for few seconds.
6.Next add the ground masala paste and fry for 2 minutes.
7. Add Tamarind paste, salt, turmeric and red chilli powder and fry for 2 minutes.
8. Then add about a cup of water to it.
9. Then add all the sautéed egg plants and tomato pieces, mix it well with gravy. Reduce the heat,cover with lid and let it cook.
10. Stir whenever needed until eggplants are well cooked. (You can see oil floating on top when the gravy is cooked). Add garam masala powder and cook for a minute.
11. Turn off the heat and add chopped cilantro.
Here’s a pictorial for reference.
I would love to hear from you , please feel free to share your feedback with photos and suggestions to me at aromaticessence77@
Have a lovely week ahead! Thanks for stopping by!