Eggplants are very versatile and a native to India. The phytonutrients in eggplant act as antioxidants that help to reduce the number of free radicals in the body which damage cells and may contribute to certain diseases, including some cancers and heart diseases. Eggplants are also a good source of dietary fiber, which can help improve cardiovascular and digestive health. I love almost all of the popular dishes made with this humble vegetable – baigan bhartha, bagara baingan, this simple shaak etc. Eggplant/ Brinjal / Baingan is extensively used in vegetarian Indian cooking both in the Gujarati and South Indian cuisine. In the pursuit to find new and traditional recipes with this wonder vegetable, today I bring to you a simple Gujarati everyday dish which is part of the Gujarati thali that is very nutritious and easy to prepare in a few minutes!
Eggplant – 1 no (if Japanese, large one else 5 to 6 small ones) cubed
Potato – 2 medium size – cubed
Tomato – 2 small ones or 1 large – chopped finely
Coriander leaves for garnish
Green garlic(Hara Lasun)- 1/2 to 1 cup chopped finely(depending on how much you like the taste it) – OPTIONAL.
Ginger – 1 inch piece
Green chillies- 2 small.
Dhania-jeera powder – 1 tbsp (coriander-cumin powder)
Asafoetida (Hing) – 1/2 tsp – optional
Salt to taste
Jaggery or brown sugar – 1 tbsp
Oil- 2 tbsp
Mustard seeds- tsp
Red Chiilies – 2 medium
Tumeric powder – 1 tsp
Red chilli powder – 1 tsp
Heat oil in a pan, when hot add red chilies and mustard seeds. When mustard pops, take the pan off the stove so that when you add spices, they don’t burn. Add the tumeric powder, red chilli powder, asafoetida(hing) and the ground green chili-ginger paste( you can grind them together or finely mince them), stir and place back on the fire. Add tomatoes, salt, dhania-jeera powder and let it cook for a few mins covered, until the tomatoes are cooked and mushy.
Now add the cubed eggplant, potato and add little water. Remember to add only little water as the eggplant will let out water when it cooks. Add half the coriander leaves and 3/4 of the green garlic(if using- Hara Lasun gives a distinct mild taste and aroma to the dish) to the mixture. Cook covered for a few mins till eggplants are cooked ( or you can pressure cook it up to 3 whistles too). Add the jaggery or brown sugar and remaining green garlic to it and cook till well combined without covering it so that the excess water will evaporate. It depends on how dry or watery you like the dish to be. Garnish with remaining coriander and serve with roti or phulka.
Enjoy this mouth watering dish. Bon Apetite! 🙂