Archive for the ‘eggplant’ Category

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eggplant and tomato high summer puff pie

September 16, 2020

August garden abundance? This pie was one of my favorite meals this summer.

—THE INGREDIENTS
Eggplant
Tomatoes
Zucchini
Onions and/or garlic
Salt and pepper, and your favorite herb (fresh basil from the garden?) or seasoning (I used fresh mint)
Puff pastry
Yogurt and feta (or pesto, or leftover tomato sauce…)
(optional) Melty cheese for the top, like brick mozzarella or pepper jack

—THE VEGETABLES
The goal is to get the moisture out, so the crust doesn’t go soggy. I went all out with this and pan-fried slices of eggplant after a salt soak, and then slices of zucchini. To save time, you could just roast everything until it’s mush, and then layer it in the pie. Might not look as pretty, but it’ll do the trick!

I used slices of fresh raw tomatoes – way too moist for the crust. Remove seeds and goopy parts, and then roast or broil slices of tomatoes, or pan-fry slices on a medium-high heat.

I used a zwiebelkuchen technique on the onions. I sauteed them on a super low heat for about 45 minutes, until they got caramelized, and then added a splash of apple cider vinegar to make them sweet and tart! Recommended, but not necessary. Added a little minced garlic right at the end, too.

—THE FILLING
I loved a Mediterranean style filling: crumbled feta mixed with yogurt and salt. But it would be great with a layer of sour cream, creme fraiche, yogurt cheese, pesto, leftover strained tomato sauce, bechamel… My mom made one this week, inspired by my recipe, with just fried zucchini and sour cream, and she said she loved it with sour cream.

If you want it super-cheesy, feta isn’t necessary. You could make this with mozzarella, sharp cheddar, even swiss. Whatever floats your boat.

Or leave the dairy out completely and add a layer of pesto. This is a very flexible pie!

—THE CRUST
You can definitely make this with any kind of crust. Puff is tricky about moisture – next time I plan to try the just-a-layer-of-tomatoes “crust” from posh in progress.

—TO ASSEMBLE PIE
preheat oven. (maybe 350 if your pie is deep and heavy, or 375 if you’re using a traditional, shallow pie dish?)

prepare pie crust. if using a homemade crust, blind bake the crust. if using frozen puff, defrost and roll out. if using frozen phyllo, brush sheets with melted butter and layer in a casserole dish.

add a layer of the driest eggplant to the bottom of the dish.

next, add a layer of zucchini slices and a layer of tomatoes. (or. you know. whatever order you want to layer them in is fine.)

pour on a layer of your filling, making sure that you strain the excess moisture if you’re using a very wet sauce.

repeat til you reach near the top of the dish, or until you’re out of ingredients. top with a melting cheese if you like.

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Recipe by me, sig at friedsig and inspired by a zweibelkuchen and a typical summer pie

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Absolutely one of my favorite things to happen during this long and difficult summer. Sending love to (almost) everyone reading this.

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turkish-style braised eggplant

July 8, 2019

Craving something sweet, healthy, and vegan?

1 large eggplant (about 1 pound)
2 teaspoons salt
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
2 medium onions, roughly chopped
3 tablespoons pine nuts
1 large tomato, peeled, cored and roughly chopped
¼ cup raisins
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon cumin
black pepper
½ cup roughly chopped dill
2 tablespoons roughly chopped parsley
pinch of sugar (optional) 1 teaspoon sugar (optional – the raisins make it very sweet!)
Thick yogurt, for serving
Lemon wedges, for serving

1. Trim ends off the eggplant. With a vegetable peeler, cut off alternating strips of skin. Cut eggplant into 1-inch cubes, place in a colander over a large bowl and toss with salt. Let sit for 30 minutes to 3 hours, rinse well and squeeze to remove as much liquid as possible; do not break cubes up.

2. In a large skillet or saucepan, heat 1/4 cup olive oil over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. Add the eggplant cubes and move them around occasionally, until they are rather tender and somewhat browned, about 7 minutes. Remove from the pan with tongs, leaving as much oil as possible in the pan. Set aside.

3. Add remaining oil to the pan with the onions and pine nuts and stir occasionally, until the onions are transparent and some pine nuts are lightly browned, 7 or 8 minutes.

4. Return eggplant to the pan with the tomato, raisins, sugar, cinnamon, cumin and pepper. Mix well, then turn heat to low. Cover the pan and cook until the eggplant is very tender but still in distinct pieces, about 30 minutes. Uncover and continue cooking, stirring once or twice, until the liquid is somewhat thickened, 5 to 10 minutes.

5. Remove the pan from heat and let sit uncovered until it is at room temperature, about 45 minutes. Stir in the dill and parsley, adjust the seasonings to taste and serve, accompanied by yogurt and lemon wedges for squeezing.

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recipe by John Willoughby at the NYT

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I am firmly in the camp of people who never bothers to pan-fry eggplant. Why pan-fry, wasting all that time, when the eggplant just absorbs the oil? This method definitely worked, although the “7 minute pan-fry” was more like 17. The raisins and pine nuts meld perfectly with the other flavors. I cheaped out and skipped the dill and parsley, and it was still good. You can replace the pine nuts with lightly smashed walnuts or even peanuts. Even just a pared-down version of this – pinch of sugar and raisins, tons of eggplant and onions, a few nuts, fresh tomato, cinnamon, and cumin – would be incredible.

The salt cure really extracts a lot of the bitterness, but then again, I used super fresh eggplant from the farmers market that was nowhere near as bitter as the supermarket stuff. I think next time I’ll just roast the eggplant. It’ll turn the dish into more of an eggplant dip than distinct cubes of eggplant, but who cares? It’s easy.

Ended up eating this throughout the week as a dip with crackers, and had no problem finishing the whole thing.

Adding this one to my favorite aubergine / eggplant recipes. If you like the kick of sweetness to balance out the bitterness of the eggplant, this is in the top 3 that I would recommend, along with sweet and sour Indian eggplant, or Georgian-style eggplant stuffed with carrot and parsnip

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laghataq (vegan eggplant, tomato, and pepper dip from afghanistan)

January 4, 2019

one whole eggplant
one red bell pepper
2 medium tomatoes

2 cloves garlic
1 T whole cumin seed
1 T whole coriander seed
1 t paprika
pinch of garlic powder

1 T tomato paste
1 small can tomato sauce
olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste

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preheat oven to 300

roast eggplant whole on 425 in skin. strip and discard some skin and anything burnt, and slice eggplant into rounds. place on baking sheet in one layer.

separately, toast coriander and cumin in dry frying pan. grind. grab your blender and add the ground cumin/coriander, a small can of tomato sauce, 1 T tomato paste, 2 whole cloves garlic, lots of olive oil (to taste,) and a pinch of garlic powder.

back to the baking sheet. layer sliced pepper and tomatoes on top of eggplant. top with sauce.

bake 1.5 to 2 hrs, or until eggplant is soft.

let eggplant cool. add everything to blender and pulse until chunky but not pureed.

top with plain, unsweetened yogurt with a little garlic powder and salt mixed in.

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recipe adapted from Humaira’s recipe at Afghan Culture Unveiled – adaptation by friedsig

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This was a little disappointing. I felt it could really benefit from lemon juice or vinegar, or something else acidic to cut the bitterness of the eggplant and the tinned tomato sauce flavor. I cut the tomato sauce from a regular can to a small can because I’m trying to eat low-sodium now, and added a bit more olive oil. Hard to imagine this dish with any more tomato sauce – it was extremely tomatoey. It tasted more like a mildly seasoned spaghetti sauce than a dip or an eggplant dish. I used a good quality Palestinian olive oil, but if you only have supermarket olive oil, you may want to skip this recipe, as a ton of the flavor comes from the olive oil. I also cut the cumin and coriander from a tablespoon of ground spices to a tablespoon of whole spices toasted and then ground, because it seemed a bit excessive, but maybe using the whole amount would help cut some of the aluminum can flavor.

Reminds me a lot of Mughlai-style eggplant from India, but lighter without the ghee and heavy cream.

My other tomato paste and eggplant recipe is Georgian-style eggplant stuffed with carrots and parsnips, but laghataq is less sweet without the carrots and parsnips. I think I’d still recommend the Georgian-style dish over this one if you wanted something healthy and interesting and very different from a tomato sauce. You could also serve as a dip with fresh pita, crackers, raw carrots and other veggies, or whatever you like – but I far preferred this as a tomato sauce than as a dip. For my tastes, this laghataq is not exactly a dip. However, if you are looking for a really unique spaghetti sauce, or a tomato sauce to eat with grits, or something to flavor white beans or okra, or something different for an egg dish like shakshouka, or something to freeze and bring down for chicken parmigiana, try this laghataq!

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roasted eggplant dip with yogurt (yoğurtlu patlıcan salatası)

July 6, 2018

A lighter baba ghanouj with yogurt instead of tahini? The perfect summer snack! A great lunch served with hummus and crackers or veggies to dip, and maybe some olives and cheese on the side. This Turkish dip is similar to melitzanosalata (greek eggplant dip) but the addition of the yogurt makes it taste more like a true dip than just a puree.

No blender necessary – mashing it with a fork works just fine.

If you like baba ghanouj, you’ll love this recipe from Almost Turkish.

 

2 long Asian-style eggplants, or one Italian-style eggplant

juice of half a lemon, or more or less to taste

yogurt to taste, about a quarter-cup

half-clove of raw minced garlic, or less if you don’t like garlic

splash of olive oil and pinch of salt

optional – fresh parsley and mint, minced

 

roast eggplant at 425 until black outside and mushy inside.

discard eggplant skin. mash up eggplant with the rest of the ingredients, using a fork or a blender. serve.

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recipe by Almost Turkish

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khatta meetha baingan, improved recipe (sweet and sour indian eggplant)

August 28, 2016

If you love sweet and sour eggplant, but don’t want to deal with making the coconut and sesame paste for baghara baingan, this is a perfect bet.

I already have another khatta meetha baingan recipe on this blog. However, it’s more of a loose idea of a dish than an actual recipe. Here’s a new version (well, new to me). I found it on some website late at night – don’t remember where I got this from. I’ll keep looking…

– Roast a bunch of eggplants. Maybe 8 tiny “Asian eggplants” or 2 big purple ones. I used about 5 brinjals.
– Heat 2 T mustard oil in a skillet, or a teaspoon of black mustard seeds in 2 T neutral oil like coconut or canola.
– When sputtering, add 1 t whole cumin seed and 1 t whole fennel seed. Fry til sputtering.
– Add 3 dry chilis, a few curry leaves, and an onion. Fry til onion becomes translucent.
– Add 1 T garlic. Fry 1 min.
– Add 1 t turmeric, 2 t coriander, fry 1-2 mins.
– Add 2 tomatoes and some tamarind paste or tamarind water, to taste.
– Add the gutted roasted eggplant and simmer for twenty minutes.
– Add a sprinkle of sugar, to taste, and serve topped with fresh cilantro and/or plain yogurt with rice.

Super flavorful, healthy, and satisfying. Sweet but not too sweet, savory, spicy but not too spicy, and just as sour as you like it. Definitely one of my favorite ways to prepare eggplant.

Eggplant is so cheap and plentiful at the farmers’ market at this time of year – take advantage of it!

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hyderabadi baghara baingan (indian sesame peanut eggplant)

August 16, 2016

this recipe by tarla dalal looks like everything i am craving today in one recipe. plans for khatta meetha baingan went right out the window once i read this.

8 to 10 brinjal eggplant (these are a small variety, so use much less if you have large dark purple eggplant)
1/4 tsp mustard seeds ( rai / sarson)
1/4 tsp fenugreek (methi) seeds
1/4 tsp nigella seeds (kalonji)
8 to 10 curry leaves (kadi patta)
1 to 3 green chillies, slit
4 tbsp oil
salt to taste

For the coconut and sesame paste
2 tbsp sesame seeds (til)
2 tbsp grated fresh coconut (or dried coconut flakes)
2 tbsp raw peanuts
1 tsp chopped ginger (adrak)
1 tsp garlic, chopped
1/4 cup chopped onions
1/4 tsp turmeric powder (haldi)
1 tsp coriander (dhania) powder
1 tsp cumin seeds (jeera) powder
1/2 to 1 tsp chilli powder, depending on your taste
1 tsp tamarind (imli) pulp

For the garnish
2 tbsp chopped coriander (dhania)
Method

Slit the brinjals, lengthwise, into four, but leave the stems on, so the eggplants remain joined at the stem. Keep aside.

For the coconut and sesame paste

Combine the sesame seeds, coconut, peanuts, ginger, garlic and onions in a pan and dry roast them over a slow flame till the flavours are released and the ingredients are lightly browned.
Add the turmeric powder, coriander seed powder, cumin seed powder, chilli powder and tamarind paste and grind it to a smooth paste using ½ cup water. Keep aside.

How to proceed

Heat the oil in a deep bottomed pan, add the mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds and nigella seeds.
When they crackle, add the brinjals, curry leaves and green chillies and sauté over medium heat for a couple of minutes. Remove and keep aside.
In the same pan, add the coconut and sesame paste and cook till the mixture leaves the sides of the pan.
Add the cooked brinjals, ½ cup of water and salt and cook covered over a slow flame till the brinjals are soft.
Serve hot.

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by tarla dalal

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decided to roast the medium lavender-colored italian eggplants at 425. the smaller brinjal eggplants and little red eggplants that look like tomatoes (!!) were fire-roasted over a gas stove and finished in the 425 oven.

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update:

absolutely incredible. a warning that the 3 slit green chilis and 1 t of chilli powder from the original recipe could be fiery depending on your chilis; i did 2 hot green chilis and 1/2 t chilli powder and it could be a bit hotter for my taste but is already hovering near the mild/medium line. if you have super-powered garden chilis, then beware.

the sesame-peanut-coconut mixture smells amazing as it is cooking. the tamarind and coconut add the perfect sweet and sour flavor, so the eggplant isn’t too bitter. the toasted sesame and peanut are absolutely perfect.

this is in my top 5 eggplant recipes of all time, along with georgian style eggplant stuffed with carrot and parsnip, japanese miso eggplant, baba ghanouj, baingan musasalam, and a simple eggplant parmigiana.

seriously this is amazing. tagging as “favorite”.

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baingan musasalam / mughlai baingan masala (indian eggplant and tomato)

August 3, 2016

mughlai cuisine, according to wikipedia, is a medieval cooking style from northern india and pakistan. it’s even influenced by mongolian food. the history of empire is wild.

history, eggplant, and cream are three of my favorite things, so i’m excited to try this recipe by tarla dalal

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3 cups eggplant
1 to 4 tbsp ghee (recipe called for 4; i used less than half that)
1 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
1 cup finely chopped onions
2 tsp ginger-garlic (adrak-lehsun) paste
1/2 to 1 tsp chilli powder
2 tsp coriander (dhania) powder
1/4 tsp turmeric powder (haldi)
1 1/2 cups chopped tomatoes
1/4 cup tomato puree
1/2 tsp sugar
2 tbsp fresh cream
salt to taste

the recipe says to start by frying eggplant pieces, but i plan to roast the eggplants whole and scoop out the flesh instead. however you like to cook eggplant, do that first.

in a frying pan, start ghee and cumin seed

add onions and saute 5 mins

add the ginger-garlic paste, chilli powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder and 1 cup of water, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 2 minutes, while stirring occasionally.

add tomatoes, cook 5 min

add the tomato puree, sugar, fresh cream and salt, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 2 minutes, while stirring occasionally.

add eggplant, cook 2 min, serve garnished with cilantro

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recipe by tarla dalal

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it’s a keeper! among my favorite eggplant recipes, for sure  [though i definitely prefer georgian-style eggplant stuffed with carrot and parsnip. as weird as it sounds, there is just something perfect about it.]

i haven’t made khatta meetha baingan in years, but i will have to make it soon to see if it’s still my favorite indian eggplant recipe, or if this (and its less souped-up cousin baingan bharta) is the new favorite.

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eggplant tonnato (roasted eggplant and tuna salad)

April 22, 2016

i modified this significantly, but here’s the original:

2 (6-ounce) cans light tuna packed in olive oil (preferably Italian), drained, divided
1 large anchovy fillet
1/4 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil plus additional for drizzling
2 teaspoons drained capers (or anything pickled)
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
2 (11 1/2- to 13-ounce) jars or containers grilled eggplant, drained
1 teaspoon finely chopped garlic
1/3 cup coarsely chopped parsley
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1 teaspoon red-wine vinegar
2 cups grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise
1/3 cup coarsely chopped mint
2 cups (1/2-inch) bread cubes from a country loaf, toasted
Equipment: 4 (16-ounces) wide jars or containers with lids

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Blend 1/4 cup tuna, anchovy, mayonnaise, oil, capers, and lemon juice in a blender until smooth to make tonnato sauce.
Pulse eggplant, garlic, parsley, zest, vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a food processor until combined but not smooth.
Toss tomatoes with mint, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
Divide eggplant mixture among jars and layer remaining tuna (broken up into large chunks), tonnato sauce, croutons, and tomatoes (including juices) on top. Drizzle with olive oil.

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from epicurious

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surprisingly, not bad. a very strange combination of flavors. i never imagined i would puree tuna. i left out half the ingredients due to my budget – left out the anchovies, the croutons, and even the tomatoes. it’s still pretty okay. if, like me, all you have in the house is a can of tuna and a few eggplants, you can go pick up some mint and give this a try. instead of capers, i used some pickles. you could use pickled anything.

plus, once you have fresh mint in the house, you can make radish, butter, and mint sandwiches (don’t knock it ’til you try it,) as well as cucumber salad with mint, cold cucumber soup, fattoush, or a mint dressing with rice wine vinegar!

not a bad healthy choice for a quick lunch – if the eggplants are roasted already, you can put this together in just a few minutes! roast a few eggplants on a day off and keep them in your fridge just in case you need a quick meal!

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nasu dengaku (japanese miso eggplant)

January 19, 2016
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

NASU DENGAKU

EDIT 2018: I absolutely love this. I make it regularly. Here’s basically what I do:

cut an eggplant in half
brush the top with oil
cut two large X’s into it.

roast at 325 until soft – could be 40 mins or more for giant purple eggplant, much less for the thin varieties of eggplant

in lieu of dashi, i put a half-cup of stock or broth (veg, chicken, fish, whatever) into a saucepan with some seaweed and simmer until visibly reduced. strain out the seaweed. add to the saucepan:

1 T of mirin or dry vermouth
1 T of sake
dash of sesame oil

 

simmer and reduce until it smells a boozy, like the alcohol has cooked off, maybe five mins.

pour this over the top of the eggplant.
broil for a few minutes.

can top with sliced green onions, white and/or black sesame seeds, or a drizzle of hot chili oil

it’s a great side dish to have with anything at all – but i especially love it for breakfast with a bowl of white rice and a poached egg, with some seaweed flakes and sesame seeds sprinkled on top!

(still adapted from otaku food; below you can find my original post)

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original post:

here is a recipe from otaku food!

Ingredients

  • 1 small eggplant, or 2 Japanese eggplants
  • 1/4 cup dashi
  • 1 tablespoon mirin
  • 1 tablespoon sake
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon miso
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • Chopped green onion and sesame seed for garnish

Quick Directions

  1. Slice eggplant in half, then cut the surface in a criss cross pattern.
  2. Brush the surface with oil, then bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 45 minutes until the eggplant is tender.
  3. Bring dashi, mirin, sake and sugar and bring to a gentle boil. Add miso and whisk to blend. Remove from heat.
  4. Remove eggplant from oven, then turn the broiler on. Brush eggplant with sauce, and sprinkle with sesame.
  5. Broil for a few minutes until the sauce has caramelized. Remove from oven and garnish with green onion.

check out the whole site at otaku food for great info about how it’s usually “grilled and roasted over the fire” in the summer at barbecues!

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don’t have dashi on hand? here’s a recipe i modified from fat-free vegan. sounds very sweet but very amazing!

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons mirin
  • 2 tablespoons sake (may substitute stock with dry vermouth or white wine)
  • 4 tablespoons mellow white miso
  • 1 tablespoon sugar or agave nectar
  • 4 Japanese eggplants, stem end trimmed and cut in half lengthwise
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil (optional)
  • toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
  • sliced green onions, for garnish

Instructions

  1. Place the mirin and sake in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Simmer for about 2 minutes to allow some of the alcohol to cook off. Then add the miso and stir until smooth. Stir in the agave nectar, reduce the heat to very low, and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, while you broil the eggplants:
  2. Brush the cut sides of the eggplants with the sesame oil, if desired. Put the eggplants cut-side down on a baking sheet and place under the broiler of your oven for about 3 minutes, checking often to make sure that they do not burn. Turn them over, and cook for another 3 minutes or until the tops are a light to medium brown. Do not burn! (If your eggplant still isn’t tender all the way through, try baking it–no broiler–a few more minutes; then proceed with the recipe.)
  3. When the eggplants are tender, top each one with the miso sauce and put them back under the broiler until the sauce bubbles up–this should take less than a minute, so watch them closely. Serve hot, sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds and green onions.+from fat-free vegan and adapted by friedsig

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update 1/31/16… here’s what ended up happening:
1 medium eggplant
1/2 c homemade chicken stock simmered for a few minutes with seaweed & strained
2 T white wine
1 t sesame oil
1/2 t. la jiao jiang (I know it isn’t Japanese, but I love this stuff!)
2 t sugar
1 T miso

cut eggplant in half, score tops and brush with olive oil, and bake at 350 til soft.

simmer all ingredients together for a few minutes except miso. turn off heat. add miso.

if your miso and stock and la are salty, you shouldn’t need to add salt at all.

pour over eggplants & broil for about 5 minutes.

I added too much stock, as you can see from the photo. A half-cup is too much for the sauce to caramelize. It’s not very photogenic, but it tastes amazing. I will try this again with actual mirin and sake. Next time, I will cut down on the sugar and the stock. Highly recommended!

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dahiwale achari baingan (eggplant in spicy yogurt sauce)

August 8, 2014

Yet another recipe that looks amazing from ãhãram! Aubergines, baingan, eggplant – whatever you call it, it’s one of my favorites.

Baingan or Aubergines – 250 gms
Onions – 2 Large
Dahi, Curd or Yogurt – 1 Cup
Ginger-Garlic Paste – 1 tbsp
Chilli Powder – 1 tsp
Turmeric – 1/2 tsp
Saunf or Fennel Seeds – 1 tsp
Jeera or Cumin Seeds – 1/2 tsp
Kalonji or Nigella Seeds – 1 tsp
Rai or Mustard Seeds – 1/2 tsp
Methi or Fenugreek Seeds – 1/2 tsp
Green Chillies – 2
Garam Masala – 1/2 tsp
Amchur or Dried Mango Powder – 1/2 tsp
Hing or Asafoetida – A Large Pinch
Oil – 2 tbsp + 1 tsp
Salt to Taste
Method

In a large vessel, create a marinade by mixing ginger-garlic paste, chilli powder, turmeric powder, 1/2 tsp salt and 1 tsp oil.
Cut the eggplant into 1/2″ pieces.
Mix the eggplant pieces well with the marinade.
Set aside for 10 minutes.
Peel and slice the onions into thin long pieces.
In a wok or kadhai, heat 1 tbsp oil.
Add the marinated aubergine pieces and stir-fry till the aubergine just starts to turn soft.
Take out the aubergines and set aside.
To the same wok, add the remaining oil.
Add mustard, fennel, nigella, cumin, and fenugreek seeds.
Stir-fry for a minute or till the seeds start to pop.
Add the sliced onions and slit green chillies.
Stir-fry till the onions are transparent & turn off heat.
Add asafoetida, garam masala and amchur powder.
Mix well.
Beat and add the yogurt to the fried onions.
Mix & add remaining ingredients.

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from ãhãram!