Methi-Baingan (Fenugreek with Eggplant) curry
A cold blustery wind was blowing the beautiful leaves off the trees, with hunger pangs roaring mightier than the wind,I walked into home after work, only to hear the gentle hum of the refrigerator….there are days when you wish the “genie” sat inside the refrigerator & Lo & behold when you opened the door, handed you a warm dish to savor.No such luck there, so attacked the first thing I saw,fresh eggplants/aubergine/brinjal which I had picked up from the fresh market last weekend.
My thoughts raced as I washed the eggplants, “What’s the one dish I can make in a jiffy to calm my senses now?” me thought, coz, I knew if I could not fix a dish in 15 minutes, I would collapse on the nearest sink, I was that hungry….cold weather always does that to me smile emoticon The images of stuffed brinjal/”Enna kathirika” floated in front of my eyes, No! no patience for that now…what else? what else can I turn this versatile veggie into?? Then this idea of “Methi Baingan” flashed in front of my mind’s eye, brandishing my kitchen knife, I was all set to prepare this creamy velvety dish, when I realized I had no fresh methi/fenugreek leaves in store,but once the mind is made up, then there is no stopping, so I searched my pantry, there in one little corner sat a bottle of dry fenugreek leaves, I picked up the bottle with a vengeance & decided to turn them moist (if I must ! ) but I WILL have that “Methi Baingan” at any cost, so soaked the dry fenugreek leaves in warm water and set about my business of chopping the vegetables & within no time, we were having hot chapatis & “Methi Baingan” for dinner smile emoticon
1.Eggplant/Brinjal/Aubergines- 6-7 (medium size ones)- cut into thin matchsticks
2.Onion- 1 big ( finely sliced)
3.Tomatoes- 3 ( finely sliced)
4.Methi( Fenugreek leaves) – fresh or dry(I used dry, hence soaked it in half a cup of warm water, drained the water & used in the curry)
5.Thai hot peppers/Green chilies – 3-4 (finely sliced)
6.Garam masala powder- 1 tsp
7.Turmeric powder- 1/2 tsp
8.Coriander powder-3/4 tsp
9.Chili powder- 1/2 tsp
10.Ginger – 1″ sliced fine
11.Oil- 2 tbsp
12.Cumin seeds- 1 tsp
13.Salt- to taste
14.Corianderleaves/Cilantro- to garnish .
1.Heat oil in a tawa, when it warms up, add the cumin seeds, let them splutter.
2.Now add the sliced green chilies /thai hot pepper & sauté till the raw smell disappears , now to this add the sliced onions & sauté till golden brown, along with ginger.
3.Add the tomatoes & stir well & cover with lid, until it’s cooked to a mushy mass.Now add all the spice powders & continue stirring until its well blended.
4.Drain the soaked Kasuri Methi/Dry Fenugreek leaves & add it to the above, a little water content, if it remains in the fenugreek leaves is perfectly acceptable .Stir till the water evaporates & the flavors are blended well.
5.Now add the chopped eggplant/brinjal to the above with salt to taste.Stir well & keep covered to cook stirring occasionally until the eggplants turns soft. Garnish with cilantro/coriander leaves on top.Remove from stove & serve with hot chapatis/flat bread or Rice & dhal, with this curry as a side dish, either way it’s a winner.Strangely the bitter eggplant & methi/fenugreek leaves blend so well together in a curry to make this dish & delicious one.Enjoy, on those days when you need a quick fix, but you mind is too tired to visit the Mughalai menu of the imperial kitchens, this comes pretty close smile emoticon
Note: Picture taken with my Fall mums (in the back ground) yet to bloom into a beautiful purple, the same color of the eggplants/brinjals.