Dahiwale Baingan

I had heard about this dish, but for some reason, the idea of eggplants simmered in a yogurt curry, didn’t really seem appealing to me. Boy! was I wrong. This was an awesome side dish for roti. I coated the eggplants in some spices and baked it instead of the traditional method of frying it. It was a delicious and healthy variation.

Ingredients:
2 long Japanese eggplants
1 onion finely chopped
1 tsp chilli powder
2 tsp ginger garlic paste
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp Madras curry powder/garam masala
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tbsp coriander powder
2 cups yogurt
1 tbsp kasoori methi
2 tsp olive oil
2 tsp canola oil
1 2 inch cinnamon stick
2 cloves
2 cardamom pods
salt to taste

Method:
Cut the eggplants into 1 inch chunks. Toss it in the chilli powder, 1/4 tsp turmeric powder and salt, along with the two tsp of olive oil. Let it sit and marinate until you preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil and bake the marinated eggplant for 25 minutes.

While this bakes, heat the canola oil in a pan over medium heat. Add the cinnamon, clove and cardamom. Let it fry and infuse the oil. Add the onion and the other 1/4 tsp turmeric powder and some salt. Saute until the onion is soft and golden brown. Add the ginger garlic paste and fry until the raw smell disappears. Add to this the garam masala or curry powder along with the cumin powder and coriander powder. Add a half cup of water and let it cook until the oil floats to top and the gravy thickens. The raw smell of the spice powders should be gone. This step is very important, because you cannot let the spices cook once you add the yogurt, coss it will curdle on boiling. This is the chance to let the flavors of the curry develop.

Meanwhile, whisk the yogurt with some water and reducing the curry to a simmer, add the yogurt and mix to combine. Add the baked eggplants to this and the kasoori methi and bring to a gentle simmer. Immediately, transfer to a serving dish.(Leaving it in the warm pan, also tends to curdle the yogurt.)

Verdict: The eggplants became creamy and sweet in combination with the tangy yogurt. The kasoori methi added a great aroma when combined with the yogurt. This tasted great with rotis and tasted really good the next day, when the flavors had time to meld.

Sending this to ‘Healing foods – Eggplant’ event, series concept by Siri.

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