Salt paprika is now a year old!
This time last year, a food enthusiast in me decided to post everyday food recipes and I cannot believe how far we have come.
Thank you so much everyone for your love and support in making it come this far. Your comments and appreciation keep me motivated to do better.
Today, going back to my Maharashtrian roots, I made “Vangi Bharit” – Smoked Eggplant Mash/ Roasted mashed aubergine.
You are probably wondering why a vegetarian recipe?
It is because most of my vegetarian dishes do not make it to the blog. I mostly cook them on weeknights in a rush and forget to click pictures. Most of my blog posts consist recipes involving Chicken or Sea food and I want to change that.
Anyway, from now onward I will try and post a balance of vegetarian as well as non vegetarian recipes so that it pleases every ones palate.
Vangi Bharit (Smoked Eggplant Mash) is a dish popular in Maharashtra, Punjab, Bihar and West Bengal states of India. It calls for roasting an eggplant or brinjal on fire which gives it the smoky flavor.
Traditionally, it was roasted in a charcoal fire which gave it a real smoky charcoal flavor but nowadays it is roasted on stove top. If you do not have a gas stove, you can even bake it (at 450F for 40 minutes) to achieve similar results.
Growing up I liked eggplants / brinjal but hated eating the skin! If you are like me then you will like this way of cooking , as the skin has to be discarded.
A tip to achieve another level of flavor would be to cut small slits in the eggplant and insert garlic cloves into them and then roast them. I have tried it and it does make a difference. But if you are not a garlic person, you may want to stay away from this.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Serves: 2-3 people
Ingredients 1 large Eggplant/Baingan 1 small to medium tomato, finely chopped 1 large onion, finely chopped 4-5 small to medium garlic cloves 1 green chili (crushed coarsely) 1/2 tsp cumin seeds Pinch of asafoetida 2 tbsp oil 1 to 2 tsp chopped coriander leaves Salt as required 1 tsp Turmeric,Red chilly powder, Garam Masala 2 tsp Crushed Peanut Powder 1 Tbsp Finely chopped colorful Bell Peppers (OPTIONAL)
- Wash the brinjal/eggplant/aubergine and then on an open flame or on top of a grill, roast the aubergine till the skin gets completely charred and it shrinks in size. You can also apply a tsp of oil to it and bake it at 450 F for 40 minutes rotating it every 20 minutes.
- Keep rotating the eggplant on the flame so that its gets cooked evenly and from all sides. This might take a while.
- With a fork or a knife cut a slit in the center of the eggplant to check if it is soft and mushy, if not, then continue with the roasting. It should be completely cooked from within.
- Remove it from the stove or oven and let it cool.
- Peel the charred skin and discard it and mash it with a fork.
- Heat oil on a medium heat in a pan. To that add cumin seeds and asafoetida. Once the cumin seeds sputter add chopped onions and saute till translucent.
- Add the crushed garlic and green chilies. Saute till the raw aroma goes away.
- To that add chopped tomatoes and saute till the tomatoes become soft and pulpy and the oil starts to leave the side of the mixture. Add turmeric, red chilly powder and crushed peanuts powder to this. (If you cannot find ready made peanut powder, take few peanuts and grind them in a food processor and add pinch of salt)
- To this mixture, add mashed eggplant along with salt and saute for 4-5 minutes on a low flame.
- Lastly add in garam masala and give a good stir. I have also added colorful bell peppers for some extra color and texture, you can leave this if you want.
- Serve this warm along with chapati and they taste great with a side of yogurt.