Baingan Bharta is a simple Punjabi or North Indian curry made with smoked or open fire roasted eggplant along with onions, tomatoes and Indian spices. If there is one thing worth trying, it has to be smoking or fire cooking your eggplant. In Andhra, we have a lot of pickles or chutneys with smoked eggplants and there is nothing to really beat that taste.
I made this Baingan Bharta quite by chance as I had run out of my favorite veggies one particular day and am I glad or what for having tried it?! This was wonderfully comforting, extremely delicious especially with a squeeze of lemon juice and a side of pickled onions. I have made this a few times ever since then and is a much loved meal at our home now.
How to make Baingan Bharta | Smoked Eggplant Curry –
Detailed step by step picture tutorial of making Baingan Bharta | Smoked Eggplant Curry –
1. Wash the eggplant and pat dry it using a kitchen towel. Roast it on open fire at medium flame.
2. Keep rotating it at regular intervals to ensure it is evenly roasted. When a knife inserted goes in smoothly, remove it from flame.
3. Drop it into a bowl with cold water. This helps in easy skin removal.
4. Carefully peel off the burnt skin off the eggplant. Cut off the stem.
5. Mash it slightly using a fork or knife and set aside.
6. In a pan, heat oil. Add shahjeera/black cumin seeds.
7. As they pop out, add finely chopped onion and fry until translucent.
8. Add ginger garlic paste and fry for 3-4 mins on low flame until the raw smell is gone.
9. Next add finely chopped tomatoes followed by turmeric powder and salt needed to cook.
10. As tomatoes begin to get mushy, add red chilli powder and Kashmiri red chilli powder.
11. Keep cooking until the tomatoes are mushy.
12. Add chopped up roasted eggplant and keep cooking for another 3-4 mins.
13. Next add the salt as needed followed by garam masala/curry powder. Mix well. Cook for another 3-4 mins.
14. As it comes together, add chopped coriander leaves and remove from heat.
15. Serve hot with a side of cut onions, lemon wedge and any Indian bread.
- It is essential to choose an eggplant that is tender and without lots of seeds.
- Make a few slits all over the eggplant to ensure faster cooking.
- Using shahjeera enhances the flavor but use cumin seeds if not available.
- Adjust spices as per preference.
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