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Vegan Indian Recipes - Vegetables / Curries
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Punjabi Eggplant & Tamarind (Baarta)
from: Jonathan Kandell

One of my relatives, a follower Yogi Bhajan (of Yogi Tea fame), sent me their cookbook.
The following is my adaptation of Siri Ved Kaur's recipe for Baarta, northern indian roasted eggplant and tamarind, which turned out delicious.
The flavors mix really well.

Enough for 4 people as a side-dish. use 2 eggplants and half everything else for two people

  • 3 med eggplants
  • 3 T oil
  • 2 onions, sliced into think rings
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1.5 t turmeric
  • 1 t crushed red chile
  • 1/2 t ground cumin
  • 3/4 t black pepper
  • 1 T ground corriander
  • 2-3 ripe tomatoes, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 C frozen peas
  • 1 T tamarind concentrate*
  • 4 T fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 C cilantro
[* Tamarind concentrate is available in Indian and Middle Eastern stores.
Don't buy the blocks of tamarind pulp by mistake as it's a pain to use].

Punch holes all over the eggplants with a fork. Bake at 450 until partially darkened, soft, and mangled looking. (About 45 minutes.)
It will look awful on the outside but will be nice and roasted on the inside.

Put groups of ingredients in individual small glasses or other containers.
The turmeric and chile in one; the cumin, black pepper, and coriander in a second; the tamarind and lemon juice in a third.

While the eggplant is cooking fry the onions in the oil over med/med-high heat until they turn golden brown.
Add the garlic for the last two minutes.
Add the turmeric and red chile and sizzle, then add the cumin, black pepper and coriander, and stir.

Add the tomatoes and peas and continue cooking, stirring frequently until the tomatoes are dissolved and the mixture has a saucy consistency.
(You may have to add a little water to prevent scorching.)

Mix the lemon juice and tamarind until smooth.
Add into the onion/tomato mixture.

Let the eggplant cool enough to handle.
Scoop out the eggplant pulp (should be soft) and mush.
Then add it into the other mixture.
Take off heat and add in the cilantro.