I have been on a Mango spree.. eating fresh mangoes.. cooking with them. Still I have plenty full to finish. Off late cooked so many mango dishes, most of the recipes are ready to be posted. Since the last two of my posts have been mango related (Mango Saasmi & Mango Pineapple Salsa), I decided I should post something different ...not mangoish;) So here I am sharing with you all a dish that belongs to the cuisine of the Indian state of Maharashtra.. BHARLI VANGI which translates to Stuffed Eggplant. Eggplant is slit and stuffed with a flavorful and spicy coconut mixture and cooked on low heat. Tastes really great with Indian breads like roti or Phulkas.
Bharli Vangi is filled with so many different layers of flavors.. Tang from the tamarind, little sweetness from the jaggery and the aroma from the spice blend namely GODA MASALA. Once you prepare this tasty coconut stuffing, the rest of the process is pretty simple.
So let's begin..
First a look at the ingredients you will need to prepare this dish..
Note: All measurements are based on the US measuring cup and spoon sizes where 1 cup = 235 ml
Serves about 5 people
- Eggplant / Aubergines / Baingan / Vangi / Brinjal : 10 (small sized)
- Peanuts : 1/2 cup
- Sesame seeds / Til : 1/4 cup
- Coriander seeds : 1 tbsp
- Cumin seeds : 1 tbsp
- Red chilli powder : 2 tsp
- Goda Masala (readily available in Indian stores): 2 tbsp
- Fresh grated coconut : 1 cup (if using frozen , the thaw before using)
- Tamarind concerntrate : 1 tsp
- Jaggery : 3 tbsp
- Oil : 2 tbsp
- Mustard seeds : 1/2 tsp
- Curry leaves : 4-5
- Cilantro : 2 tbsp
- Turmeric powder / Haldi : 1/2 tsp
- Asafoetida / Hing : 1/2 tsp
- Salt as per taste
Now let's see how to proceed with these ingredients..
- Slit each eggplant, once through and then again at a right angle to make 4 equal parts without separating them from the stem. Retain a small part of the stem. Keep them in salted water for 10 minutes. Then rinse and set aside.
- Dry roast the peanuts in medium heat. Once done, remove the skin. Using a dry grinder, grind them in to a fine powder.
- Dry roast cumin seeds and coriander seeds over medium heat. Once the seeds change in color and start spluttering, turn off the heat and set it aside.
- Dry roast the sesame seeds and set it aside.
- Now using a dry grinder, make a powder of the cumin-coriander-sesame seed mixture.
- Take the freshly grated coconut. To this, add the ground peanuts, ground coriander-cumin-sesame seeds mixture, jaggery powder, GODA Masala, red chilli powder, tamarind and salt. Mix until well incorporated. Taste the filling to check the salt.
- Stuff the eggplants with the coconut mixture. Some stuffing will be left over. We will use it at a later stage.
- Heat oil in a thick deep bottomed pan. When hot, add the mustard seeds and the curry leaves
- When the seeds start to splutter, add the asafoetida and turmeric powder.
- Add the stuffed eggplants. Saute for about 5-7 minutes.
- Now add the left over stuffing and 1 cup of water to the eggplants. Adjust the salt (Remember the stuffing already has salt in it. So add accordingly) Cook covered on low-medium heat for about 30 minutes or until cooked. . Remember to gently turn the eggplants once in a while to ensure even cooking through out.
- Once the eggplants are done, sprinkle some chopped cilantro.Serve hot with phulkas or rotis.
Recipe adapted from Mumbai Masala