We love brinjals/eggplant/ aubergines (vanga/baingan) in all its forms. It can be vangyacha kapa or vangyacha bharit (baingan bharta) or bharlela vanga ( baingan bharwan/ stuffed eggplant). We also add it in sambhars and certain rice preparations like masale bhaat and vangyacha bhaat.
Nutritionally, eggplant is very low in calories and fats but rich in soluble fiber. It is considered to be effective in controlling high blood cholesterol.The skin (deep blue/purple) has significant amounts of antioxidant, anthocyanin.It also contains good amounts of many essential B-complex vitamins, a good reason for incorporating this veggie in our diet.
I make the bharta/ bharit in 2 styles. One is my late mil’s version using dahi, and other is my mothers version with tamarind as the souring agent. We love both styles, so its always alternated. Todays’ version is the yogurt one.
1 large Brinjal
2 small onions , peeled and finely chopped
8-10 Curry leaves
1 tsp Mustard seeds/rai
1/2 tbsp Cumin seeds/ jeera
1 tbsp Ghee/oil
1-2 green chillies, roughly chopped
1/2 tsp Fenugreek seeds/ methi dana (optional)
1 cup yogurt/dahi
Chopped coriander leaves
- Wash the brinjal and prick it with a fork or make intermittent small cuts by poking with a knife, so as to prevent it from bursting open while roasting.
- Place a tawa or a skillet on medium flame and place the brinjal on it. Keep on turning the sides of the brinjal after few minutes, so as to evenly roast the brinjal.
- Insert a knife or a tooth pick to check for doneness. Check the crown and the base too and only then switch off the flame.
- Allow it to cool. Once cooled, peel off the skin, cut the crown and mash the meat.
- Add chopped yogurt, onions and coriander and mix well.
- Add salt only when you are ready to eat or else it will release water.
- Give bhagar or phodni. Take a small vessel, preferrable iron and heat it.
- Add ghee/oil and once it is hot, add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, curry leaves, asafoetida, green chillies and fenugreek seeds.
- Once it splutters, switch off the flame and pour this spiced hot ghee on the above brinjal mixture. Mix well.
- Serve with rotis /chapatis or my familys favourite bhakris ( millet flat breads).