When I was in Hendersonville, we stopped by a new spice and tea shop on Main Street, and I picked up a packet of garam masala. So since then, I’ve been wanting to use it to make something delicious. When I got an eggplant in our CSA, I thought that was the perfect opportunity.
I did a little internet research, trying to find a recipe that was authentic but wouldn’t have too many specialty ingredients that I’d have to go out and purchase. Naturally, the result was delicious, but maybe not quite as delicious as if I had spent the time and money on those speciality ingredients.
I served this eggplant bharta (I believe bharta just means ‘mashed’) with jasmine rice and mini chicken tikka samosas from Trader Joe’s. The eggplant was not incredibly flavorful, but combined with the samosas and rice, it was really delicious. The BF and I are both fairly light eaters, so this recipe and a box of frozen samosas made dinner for the both of us and another lunch for me. If you’re cooking for more than two, I would definitely recommend getting two eggplants and doubling the recipe. I also recommend attempting this on a weekend since prepping and roasting the eggplant will take quite some time. But the results are worth it! Try it out!
1 medium-sized eggplant
1 tbsps cooking oil
1 shallot, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2″ piece of ginger, grated
4 oz (~3/4 cup) grape tomatoes, chopped
1 tsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp garam masala
Slice the eggplant in half lengthwise. With the tip of a knife, score the flesh deeply in a diamond cross-hatch pattern by making two or three long cuts, cutting at a steep angle, and then rotating the eggplant to make another set of similar cuts. Press on the edges of the halves to open the cuts and sprinkle salt over the surface and into the cuts. Set aside, cut side up, for 30 min. Heat the oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment.
Over the sink, gently squeeze the eggplant to extract the salty juice and wipe them dry with a paper towel. Brush each half thoroughly with olive oil. Place each half, cut side down, on the lined baking sheet. Roast for 1 hour. The eggplant will collapse and the bottoms will be a deep brown caramel color. Let cool considerably before handling, at least 20 minutes. Gently turn the cut side up, and scoop the flesh from the skin with a spoon. Coarsely mash and set aside.
Heat the cooking oil (olive oil, vegetable oil, etc.) in a pan over medium-high heat. Add the shallot and garlic, and saute until shallots are nearly translucent and the garlic releases its smell. Add the ginger and cook for one minute more. Add the tomatoes, cumin, and garam masala. Cook for 3-5 minutes, stirring often to prevent the spices from sticking to the pan. (Sprinkle a bite of water if necessary.) Add the eggplant and mix well. Cook for one more minute, then serve hot with rice and/or naan.
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Funday Monday from Still Being Molly and Lipgloss and Crayons
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Melt In Your Mouth Monday from Make Ahead Meals for Busy Moms
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All Things Pretty from Sparkles and a Stove and My Fashion Forward Blog
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