By tradition, this Hyderabadi cuisine is prepared by cooking the eggplants in a pan or tadka, hence the name baigan. However, in this recipe, tomato paste is used as a substitute for the traditional peanut, poppy seeds and kalonji mixture for the thick gravy mixture. What’s remarkable in this recipe is that it contains no onions and garlic, which makes it an option during the observation of Navratri.
- 7 – 8 pcs. Baingan or Small Eggplant
- 2/3 cup Tomato Paste or Puree
- ½ cup Desiccated Coconut, unsweetened
- ½ tbsp. Curd or Yogurt
- 1 ½ tbsps. Cashew Paste
- 2 tbsps. Peanuts, crushed
- 2 tbsps. Sesame Seeds, grounded
- 1 pc. Big Green Chili, chopped
- 2 tbsps. Tamarind Paste
- ½ tsp. Degi Mirch or Red Chili Powder
- ½ – 1 tsp. Coriander Powder, coarsely grounded
- ¼ tsp. Haldi
- 1 ½ tsp. Garam Masala Powder
- 1 ½ tsp. Jeera or Cumin Seeds
- 2 tbsps. Cilantro leaves, chopped
- 1 ½ tbsps. Oil or Ghee
- Salt to taste
- Prepare the gravy first by putting cumin seeds in an oil-heated pan. When the cumin seeds start to sizzle, add the tomato puree in along with coconut, yogurt, sesame seeds, cashew paste, degi mirch, salt and haldi. Mix it well and cook until the oil separates from the mixture.
- Add coriander leaves, green chili and garam masala powder then mix it until everything is well-blended together.
- Cut the baigan cross-wise then add it in the gravy mixture. Add ¼ cup water, give it a good mix then let it cook for at least 15 – 20 minutes or until the baigan becomes soft and tender.
- Pour in tamarind paste, stuff some of the gravy inside the baigan and serve along with rotis.