Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Baingan ka Raita ~ "Beguner Raita" (Aubergine in spiced yogurt)

Sometimes we don't decide what we are going to do, rather things and circumstances decide how we act. This time it just happened with me. I had lots of small brinjal in my vegetable rack and also a huge can of yogurt. So "Raita" (spiced yogurt) is the obvious choice.
Raita is basically smoothly beaten yogurt mixed with some spices/herbs (there are many variations). Sometimes vegetables or fruits ( like onion, bottle gourd, potato, cucumber, carrot, pineapple etc.) are mixed with this yogurt. Even people mix "boondi" (fried gram flour balls) to make "boondi raita". 
This is a healthy dish for this HOT summer days. Takes very less time and really tasty at the same time.

Ingredients for "Baingan ka Raita" (Aubergine in spiced yogurt):

  1. Aubergine/ brinjal 8 small size 
  2. Hung yogurt 3 cups 
  3. Salt (as required)
  4. Black salt 1/2 tea spoon
  5. Sugar 2 table spoon (or little more if you like)
  6. Asafoetida 1/4 tea spoon
  7. Whole black mustard seed 1 tea spoon
  8. Whole cumin seed 1 tea spoon
  9. "Bhaja moshla" (a powder of dry roasted cumin seed, coriander seed and dry red chilli)
  10. Dried red chilli 2
  11. Curry leaves 8-10
  12. Mustard oil ( for frying brinjals and for tempering)

How to make "Baingan ka Raita" (Aubergine in spiced yogurt):
  • Put the yogurt on a muslin cloth and hang it for 45 minutes to get thick yogurt. Add black salt, salt, sugar to it.
  • Beat to a smooth and creamy texture. Cover it and keep aside.

  • Wash and cut brinjals lengthwise. Soak into water for 15 minutes. Take out from water and marinate with some salt for 15-20 minutes.
  • Heat oil in a pan and fry brinjals. Strain and arrange them on serving bowl. Spread beaten yogurt over them evenly.
  • Heat 1 table spoon and little more fresh oil (do not use that oil you have used to fry the brinjals.) in a separate pan. Add asafoetida, mustard seed, cumin seed, chillies, curry leaves. Let them splutter for a while. Feel the aroma and turn off the heat.
  • Spread this tempering over "raita". And "Baingan ka Raita" is ready to serve.
It's a great summer dish and I love serving it with plain rice and daal.

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