Brinjal is a vegetable with which many have a love / hate kind of relation.Today i have for you all a dish from brinjal – North Karnataka style / Maharashtra style ” Stuffed Brinjal“, which i am sure will receive a thumbs up, from even brinjal haters. In Karnataka , Jolada rotti –Badnekayi Ennegayi Palya (Jowar Bakri + Stuffed brinjal – in Kannada) is famous and must try combo just like chole bature is in Punjab.I’m a huge die hard fan of this dish right from childhood and happy to see my daughter too in that club now.. Hmm.. history repeats…
You can make this dish in many ways. But the main requirement for it is small tender brinjals. Pick the ones that have less seeds.The stuffing ,masala part may vary from region to region The one that i am sharing today is Maharshtra and North Karnataka style where in the brinjals are cooked in spices along with tamarind juice and flavored with roasted peanut-sesame-kopra powder.
Authentic version of this dish calls for more oil. Brinjal needs to be cooked slowly in oil .But we do not prefer much oil in our cooking .So to reduce oil usage comparatively but not compromise with the final taste, i cook stuffed brinjals half in the cooker. And most important thing ,addition of peanut-sesame-kopra powder in the last step helps in giving nice oily effect and taste to the gravy. Do try out yourself.. here goes the recipe…enjoyy…
- 1/2 kg brinjal Small tender
- 1 big onion , thinly sliced
- few Curry Leaves
- 1/4 tsp Turmeric
- 1 tsp Mustard
- Jaggery - little (optional)
- lemon size Tamarind soaked in water
- 2 tbsp Oil
- to taste Salt
Masala for stuffing :
- 2 tbsp Bengal Gram Chana Dal
- 1 tbsp Split Black gram Urad dal
- 1 tbsp Coriander Seeds Dhania
- 1 tsp Cumin Seeds Jeera
- 1/4 tsp Fenugreek seeds methi
- 6 - 12 Red Chillies based on spice level
- few Curry Leaves
- 3 - 4 tbsp Peanut
- 3 tbsps Dry Coconut / Kopra (grated / cut to pcs)
- 2 tbsp Black sesame seeds / til / niger seeds / gurellu
- Wash and dry the brinjals. Cut them in x-shape just half through the brinjals.Do not remove stalk.Keep immersed in water for about 10 mins. Discard water.
- Separately dry roast peanuts and sesame seeds.Roast till they are fragrant .Once cool, if you want de skin peanuts.
- Transfer roasted peanuts,roasted sesame and dry coconut to a mixer jar. Grind to a coarse powder. Keep aside to use in the end.
- Fry the ingredients mentioned under masala in a tsp of oil.
- Grind it to a fine powder. Transfer to a wide plate and add salt,turmeric and little jaggery to it.Mix well
- Stuff the masala with a spoon or with your fingers as much as possible into the slitted brinjals. Keep the remaining masala powder aside to use later .
- In a small cooker,take more oil .When they are hot, splutter mustard seeds and curry leaves.Add onions and saute till they are translucent.
- Now add the stuffed brinjal and saute for 3-4 minute.Keep the flame on medium.Add salt,tamarind and remaining stuffing masala if there is any.Arrange the brinjals side by side,add some water and close the cooker lid .Cook it for just 1 whistle.This ensures uniform cooking of brinjal,reduces cooking time and also helps in reducing oil usage.
- Once the pressure releases ,open the cooker and let them cook again for 8-10 mins on low flame.Let it boil well.
- When the brinjals are cooked, finally add peanut-niger seeds -coconut powder.Mix well. Addition of this powder will thicken the gravy. Add some water ,based on your desired consistency.Give it just a boil.Switch off .
- Serve hot stuffed brinjal with Chapathi / Jowar bhakri / Rice bhakri / Steamed Rice.
- If you are lazy to stuff brinjal / running out of time, short cut method is : just chop brinjal into big pieces and proceed with other steps as mentioned above.
- If you want you can just stuff rasam powder / sambar powder instead of freshly roasting spices.
- While roasting spices if you want you can add 2 cloves,a piece of cinnamon and a cardamom.
- If you want you can omit onion.
- If you are ok with more oil,you can cook them slowly with more oil, stirring in between.But i would not recommend it as taste wise and health wise i feel my method of cooking is better.
- Do not forget to add peanut-sesame-dry coconut powder in the end.This gives nice taste and texture to the gravy.
- Do not remove the stalk from the Brinjal, as it helps hold the veggie in shape without the stuffing coming out while cooking.
- The same masala as well method can be used to cook stuffed capsicum .
- Instead of black sesame seeds you can also use little poppy seeds / nigella seeds (huchellu/gurellu)