Many years ago, one fellow at my place of work had brought Baingan Bharta for his lunch with super soft parathas. I took one taste of it and was completely floored by the wonderfully pleasant taste of that particular Baingan Bharta. It was superb! I had had Baingan Bharta before but never that good! I polished off the rest of his lunch while he gladly relished the rest of my lunch. That same weekend, I made Baingan Bharta like what I had had in office and it was spot on like what I had eaten! I’ve been making Baingan Bharta like that ever since. 🙂
It’s so important not to over spice vegetarian recipes and dishes. Though quite a few people seem to love vegetable dishes literally dripping with oil and doused in spices, I think and it does actually kill the taste of the unfortunate vegetables used in that dish! Sometimes all I can taste is the overwhelming heat of chilies and that is really so sad. All the natural sweetness, goodness and flavor gets destroyed in entirety then. My version of this brinjal recipe focuses entirely on the awesome natural flavors of all the ingredients in this explosively tasty recipe.
- Brinjal or Baingan - 1 Large Approximately 250 Grams
- Green Peas - 1 Cup
- Onion - 1 Medium Sized Chopped Small
- Tomatoes - 1 Large or 2 Medium Chopped Small
- Green Chilli - 1 Finely Sliced
- Fresh Coriander Leaves - ½ Cup Finely Chopped
- Coriander Powder - ¼th Teaspoon
- Cumin Powder - ¼th Teaspoon
- Chili Powder - ¼th Teaspoon
- Garam Masala Powder - 1 Pinch
- Turmeric Powder - ¼th Teaspoon
- Asafoetida Powder - 1 Tiny Pinch
- Salt - To Taste
- Oil - 1 Tablespoon
- Wash the Brinjal properly and place it on a stove with the burner turned up high.
- Roast the vegetable evenly all over till the skin is black and charred.
- Cool the roasted brinjal down completely and peel off most of the charred vegetable skin.
- Leave a few bits on it as this will add a wonderfully subtle charred and smoky flavor to the dish.
- Roughly chop the peeled brinjal and set aside.
- Place a non-stick kadhai on a stove on low heat.
- Add the oil and after 30 seconds add the Asafoetida powder.
- After about 10 seconds drop in the chopped onions.
- Drop a pinch of salt so that the onions can release their water quickly and cook faster.
- About a minute after sautéing the onions, drop in the chopped tomato and sliced green chili.
- While the chopped tomato is cooking, drop in the Green Peas and stir.
- Continue to cook until peas are ¾th done.
- Add the chopped and roasted brinjal and stir. Turn the heat up to medium-high.
- Add Salt and the powdered Spices and stir really well.
- The roasted brinjal hardly needs any cooking time as it has been cooked half way during the roasting process.
- Cook on low heat for 5 minutes more.
- After 5 minutes drop in the chopped Fresh Coriander Leaves and mix.
- turn the heat off immediately and serve.
- Enjoy with hot and hot parathas or rotis.
And it’s that simple! You have a wonderfully prepared pure vegetarian dish before you in a matter of minutes. I kept the cooking time to the least so that all the nutrients and taste of the vegetables do not get cooked out completely. I have kept the cooking time of this recipe as a bit longer than what the dish actually takes to prepare as I do not want novices to rush through the recipe and end up with a not so delicious dish on their tables. I would like all my readers to enjoy their time cooking and not be anxious about following some fancy legality while making a particular recipe. I also kept the quantity and the number of spices minimal because like I had mentioned earlier, I want the natural flavors of all the ingredients to prevail in this dish.
Notice also that I did not say to caramelize the onions and if you follow my recipe word to word you’ll find all the elements of this dish are about 80% cooked which will bring about the explosion of natural flavors in your mouth as you eat my version of Baingan Bharta. This is what I had tasted some years ago at work and this is how I would also like you to enjoy Baingan Bharta.
Do make this recipe! I’m sure you are going to love it!