Sunday, February 21, 2010

Nazia's Masala Baingan

recreating from memory.



The smiling face with specs, on the right is Nazia.

The Khata Meetha Masala Baigan was much talked about long after the Baby shower. The ladies crowned her the best cook in the team and warned me that I had competition. I agree completely with them She definitely got the ladies licking their fingers and me seeking the recipe. Nazia moved on and I was not able to get the recipe she promised for the blog. So this post is about recreating from memory.

Ingredients

8 to 10 small purple brinjals
4-5 onions sliced
1 teaspoon coriander powder
1/2 teaspoon red chili powder
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 green chili
4-5 cloves garlic
1 inch ginger piece
1 teaspoon cumin
1 cup chopped cilantro
2 tablespoons thick tamarind extract
1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
salt to taste
1 + 2 tablespoons oil

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a fry pan. Fry the onions till translucent. Chop the ginger roughly and add it. Add the cloves of garlic. Fry a bit. Now add the spices, cumin, coriander powder, chili and turmeric powder and the green chili. Now let the masala cool then remove to a grinder. Make a rough paste with salt added. Now mix in the chopped cilantro, save some for garnish. Keep aside.

Prepare the baby brinjals by washing and cutting crosses deep down the bulbs all the way to 3/4ths. Leave about a 1/4 so they don't fall apart on cooking. Keep the calyx on. It makes it easy for picking up as well as make the brinjals suculent.

Stuff the brinjals/ baingans with the ground paste. and keep lined in a thali.

In the same frying pan in which you fried the onions add 2 tablespoons of oil. Splutter mustard seeds. Now layout the stuffed brinjals neatly in the frying pan, keep on medium flame. Cook covered until one side of the brinjal shows dark spots. Then turn over to the uncooked side. While doing this make sure you are keeping the brinjals and masala intact and not spilling it out. If it does no worries but try to do it with a little care. Cook with cover till done. Now check if the underneath shows browning. Poke a spoon at the stems near the calyx if done well it will cave in. Now at this point when you are sure the brinjals are done sprinkle the tamarind extract over the cooked brinjals. The khata of tamarind is balanced by the meetha of loads of onions in the recipe so no need to add any sweetener to balance the taste. Sprinkle a little water if required and turn up the heat for 5 mins so the tamarind spreads the sourness evenly. Avoid stirring but you can jiggle them around a bit. This is a little tricky though not necessary just helps in mixing the flavors well. Sprinkle some saved cilantro as garnish. I have made this with a lot less oil but most people love these stuffed brinjals swimming in oil like a pickle.

Serve hot with roti or dal and rice as accompaniment. I remember Nazia mentioned that it is traditionally served with Mutton biryani too.

4 comments:

  1. Masala baingan looks perfect nice recipe.

    ReplyDelete
  2. That looks beautiful; I'll have to try this soon.

    All the ladies look just as beautiful and radiant!

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  3. It looks so delicious....sometimes I wish I could eat it off your website..Bookmarking this to make it...Agree with Nupur, all the ladies look so happy, I miss working and being in India :(

    ReplyDelete
  4. Kamala and it was lipsmacking too!

    Nupur you are right all the ladies planned this as an exclusive event and so it shows on the faces.

    Sonia plan a trip right back home soon:)

    ReplyDelete

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