There are two different versions of Baingan Bharta. One is made with cooked and the other with raw ingredients! This dish has a distinctive flavor thanks to the mustard oil and raw ingredients in it - everything except the eggplant (which is roasted) is used raw.
Baingan Bharta is a healthy food - eggplant that is the main ingredient, is low in fat and sodium and high in dietary fiber, vitamins C and B6 magnesium, phosphorus and potassium. Add to that the tomatoes, green chilies and onion and you've packed a mighty nutritional punch in one single dish!
- 1 large eggplant
- 1 large onion chopped very fine
- 1 large tomato chopped very fine
- 2 green chilies chopped very fine (optional)
- 7- 8 cloves of garlic chopped very fine
- 1/4 cup chopped coriander
- 2 tbsp mustard oil
- Salt to taste
- 1/2 lime
Baingan Ka Bharta requires that the eggplant be roasted. This can be done in several different ways:
- Roast on a gas cooktop by just placing the eggplant straight on the burner and keeping the flame on low setting. Keep turning and cooking till all the skin on the eggplant is charred and the inner flesh looks really soft. A good sign to watch for is that the eggplant seems to 'cave in' on itself!
- Grill in your oven grill or on your barbecue grill. Again, keep turning periodically till all the skin on the eggplant is charred and the inner flesh looks really soft.
- 'Roast' in your oven till all the skin on the eggplant is charred and the inner flesh looks really soft.
- Once the eggplant is roasted, allow to cool fully and then peel off and discard the charred skin and stem.
- Mash the eggplant roughly, in a mixing bowl.
- Add the mustard oil, onion, tomato, green chilies, garlic, coriander leaves and salt to taste. Mix well.
- Add a squeeze of lime juice and mix well.
- Serve as a side dish in combination with foods like plain boiled rice and Lehsuni Daal (garlic-flavored lentils), or plain boiled rice and Rajma (red kidney bean curry).