Sunday, July 24, 2011

Bagara Baingan / Eggplant in Peanut Sauce

Adapted from
Small Eggplants - 10, washed and dried completely
Peanut Oil - 2 tbsp
Whole Garam Masala - 5 cloves, 1 cinnamon stick, 2 cardamom, 1 bayleaf
Mustard Seeds - 1/4 tsp
Cumin Seeds - 1/4 tsp
Hing / Asafoetida - a pinch
Curry Leaves - 5
Onion - 2 tbsp, chopped
Ginger Garlic Paste - 1 tsp
Turmeric - 1/4 tsp
Cumin Powder - 1/2 tsp
Coriander Powder - 1/2 tsp
Red Chilli Powder - 1/2 tsp
Peanuts - 1/2 cup
Sesame Seeds - 1 tbsp
Shredded Dried Coconut - 1 tbsp

Tamarind - 2 tsp, soaked in warm water
Jaggery - 1 tbsp, grated
Green Chillies - 2, chopped, for garnishing (optional)

Add a tsp of oil to an iron skillet and roast the peanuts, sesame seeds and dried coconut. Once the peanuts start getting brown specks, remove from heat and cool down. Add about half a cup of water and grind in a grinder / food processor to a coarse paste. Keep aside.

Heat a tbsp of oil in the skillet. Cut each eggplant from the bottom in to 4 wedges keeping the stem intact. Add the eggplants to the skillet and shallow fry on medium low heat till the eggplants are soft and cooked. Carefully remove them to a plate without separating the wedges from the stems.

Add the remaining oil to the skillet. Add the whole garam masala spices and mustard seeds. Once the mustard seeds start popping, add the cumin seeds, curry leaves, hing and chopped onion. Cook till the onion gets soft.

Add the ginger garlic paste and turmeric, cumin, coriander, red chilli powder. Sprinkle some water and saute for a few minutes.

Now add the ground peanut mixture, tamarind extract, jaggery and 2 cups of water. Bring the sauce to a boil and simmer covered on low heat for around 20 minutes. Keep stirring in between so that the sauce doesnt get burnt at the bottom.

Once oil begins to float on top, the sauce is cooked. Add the fried eggplants,  mix gravy well and cook on low flame for 10 minutes. Garnish with chopped green chillies and serve hot.

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