Traditional Hyderabadi Baghare Baingan Recipe

Baghare Baingan is a traditional eggplant curry prepared with crushed coconut, peanuts and sesame seeds. The actual meaning of Baghare Baingan is tempered eggplants. In Asian cuisine, tempering means heating up the oil and adding spices to it and then pouring it on the dish. This dish is originally from the city of Hyderabad. It is equally popular in India and Pakistan.

For Baghare Baingan, eggplants are usually deep-fried but I shallow fry them to avoid extra calories. Most of the time, I use baby eggplants to make this dish as they absorb the spices quickly and can easily be fried. This recipe consists of a long list of spices. Although, these spices add a unique flavour and aroma to baghare baingan. No doubt, this is a wonderful way to eat eggplants. Even those who do not like eggplants would like this mouthwatering recipe.

Ingredients:

Baby Eggplants               1 Kg

Oil                                      For frying

Spices for the Roasted Mix:

Raw Peanuts                   1 tbsp

Sesame Seeds                 1 tbsp

Crushed Coconut           1 tbsp

Poppy Seeds                    1 tbsp

Cumin Seeds                   1 tbsp

Coriander Seeds            1 tbsp

Cloves                              5 – 6

Peppercorns                   8 – 10

Cinnamon Sticks           1 inch piece

Green Cardamom          3 – 4

Black Cardamom           2

Ingredients for the Onion Paste:

Onion (medium size)     2

Garlic Cloves                   10 – 15

Ginger                               2 inch piece

Green Chili                      6 – 7

Spices for the Tempering:   

Mustard Seeds                ½ tsp

Fenugreek Seeds            ¼ tsp

Curry Leaves                  8 – 10

Green Chili                     5 – 6

Onion seeds / Nigella Seeds        ½ tsp

Ingredients for Baghare Baingan Curry:

Turmeric Powder            ½ tsp

Salt                                     1 tsp

Red Chili Powder            2 tsp

Yoghurt                             250 grams

Tamarind Pulp               ½ cup

Method to prepare Baghare Baingan:

To cook Baghare Baingan, the first step is to make a roasted spices mix. Take all the dry spices mentioned in the ingredients list for the roasted mix, roast them on a skillet for 5 – 6 minutes until you get a nice aroma. Then blend them with a little water to make a fine paste. Set aside.

Baghare Baingan

Also prepare onion paste by blending together onion, garlic, ginger and green chilli. Keep it aside. Now wash and pat dry the eggplants. Make one horizontal and one vertical slit (like a plus sign) in all eggplants. Just avoid cutting the eggplants through the entire length. Now shallow fry the eggplants on medium heat till they become soft and light golden brown. Remove the eggplants from the pan and set aside.

Now take a deep wok and add ½ cup of oil. Add mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, onion seeds, curry leaves and green chilli and let them crackle. Saute till they sizzle. Now add the roasted spices mix and onion paste in it. Also mix all curry ingredients i.e. turmeric powder, salt, red chilli powder, yoghurt and tamarind pulp. Add around ½ cup of water and cook the gravy for 8 – 10 minutes with the covered lid on medium heat.

Take the fried eggplants and add them to the masala mix or gravy. Add 1 cup of water, cover the lid and let it cook for 10 – 12 minutes on medium-low flame. Once the oil separates from the gravy, turn off the flame. Serve hot with chapati or boiled rice.

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