Side Dishes for Rotis/Dosas/ Naan.

Delicious Brinjal Gothsu (Tamarind Gravy of Onions, Tomatoes and Brinjals- Side for Pongal)

Brinjal Gothsu

I guess Brinjal Gothsu was some thing I have neverhad much in my own home. There  was this one hotel in Madurai, that used to serve steaming hot blobs  of ghee laden Venn Pongal with spicy Brinjal Gothsu. TIt`s a very versatile preparation and so homes in Tamil Nadu, all have their own way of preparing the same. My mother in law also makes awesome tasty Gothsu, and she once used the base of the morning rasam for Gothsu for the night. Rehashing ingredients sometimes is more tastier than the original preparations. This combination always works as the sweet spicy tanginess in the Gothsu compensates for the peppery niceness of the Pongal. Iguess this is what my telugu friends refer to as “Gojju”. When you have guests for breakfast, Gothsu is an easy tasty side for Pongal/Dosa and Idli.

INGREDIENTS:

1 long Japanese Eggplant diced in to 1 inch cubes.

1 1/2 cups of tamarind water.

1 Onion diced in to small cubes or 15 shallots sliced in to halves.

1 Tomato chopped in to fine pieces.

1 Spoon Sambar Powder.

1 spoon of Rice Flour diluted in 4 spoons of water.

Hing

Turmeric.

Salt

Cilantro to Garnish.

Curry Leaves, Mustard & Urad Dhal for seasoning.

PREPARATION:

  • Take a kadai and place on the stove. Pour 2 spoons of oil and add urad dhal, mustard seeds and curry leaves. Keep the diced vegetbles ready to be used.
  • When the mustard splutters, add onions and allow to saute till soft. Now add the tomatoes and mix well.
  • Tap in a pinch of hing and  turmeric and cook till the tomato-onion mixture is mushy.
  • Now add the diced eggplants, sambar powder, salt and mix well.
  • Add the tamarind water and  allow around ten minutes for the brinjals also to cook in to the mixture and get soft.
  • When its a little thick, add the rice-flour water to the kadai.
  • Add some more water depending on what you want the final consistency to be.
  • Normally it would be a little thicker than “Sambar” but thinner than a chutney or dip.
  • Garnish with chopped cilantro leaves and serve hot with Venn Pongal.


Poriyals / Kootu Varieties.

Stuffed Yennai Kathirikkai – (Eggplant stuffed with ground masala and slow roasted in oil)

IMG_1371 Stuffed Brinjal is a delicacy that has a hundred different methods of preparation – influenced by the culture and changes over the times. My mother in law is an expert in this delicacy and she would make it often when we visited home in Srirangam. My husband loves eggplants and specially this particular dish and relishes it ,when its lovingly made by his  mother.At his request, I learnt to make this dish from my mother in law. Over times, on account of lavish use of oil, I have concocted my own way of simplifying this dish to accommodate both counts of flavour and health. There are a number of little tips that are important for this delicacy to turn out the way its supposed to be presented. Care should be taken to buy fresh, tender, small  brinjals, and prepare it in its freshest form, to minimise the effort involved as well as the oil used in its preparation.Most of the cooking is finished in the microwave oven, so that saves a lot of time, makes it a lot more simpler, and reduces the oil used. My recent addition of the Calphalon Sear Pan with its super wide base and sear bottom halves the cooking time and makes it fuss free.

INGREDIENTS: 15 tender and fresh Brinjals.

Salt

Curry Leaves

Hing

Roast in oil:

4 Tsp Dhania

2 Tsp  Bengal Gram.

1 Tsp Toor Dhal

1 Tsp Pottu Kadalai  .

1 Tsp Peanuts.

6 – 7  Red Chillis

1/2 Tsp Salt

1 Tbsp Coconut

5- 7 Curry Leaves

Hing

PREPARATION:

  • Clean the brinjals, dry them and slit them in horizontally and vertically until you just reach the stalk. Do not remove the stalk and place them on a microwave safe plate greased with oil.
Brinjals sprayed with oil ready to get roasted.
Brinjals sprayed with oil ready to get roasted.
  • Spray the brinjals with oil spray/ (spread gingely oil ) and sprinkle salt over them. Cook the brinjals in the microwave for about 2-3 minutes. They will turn soft and semi cooked.
  • Roast the captioned ingredients in oil and powder them finely in a mixer. The ground powder already has salt which will help to flavour the brinjals.
  • When the  brinjals are cooled, stuff the powder inside the brinjals, and keep them closed again as if they were whole. Since they are sprayed with oil, the stuffing will stick to the sides of the brinjals.
  • Pop in the microwave for another 2 minutes.
  • Take a wide mouthed pan, add oil, and season with mustard and curry leaves and slowly place the stuffed brinjals one by one,  in to the pan.
  • Cover and cook on low flame for about twenty minutes. Keep adding a spoon or two of oil, if you think its getting dry.
  • If needed sprinkle a few drops of water and cook until the brinjals are soft and cooked to perfection.
  • When one side of the brinjal gets seared, tip them over with a spoon so they cook uniformly.
  • When done switch off stove and serve HOT with Mango Kuzhambu or Chinna Vengaya Vathal Kuzhambu. 
  • YUM!!!

IMG_1373

Kerala / Palakkad Recipes. · No Need of Onions!!! · Poriyals / Kootu Varieties.

Kathirikkai Podimas – Eggplant/Brinjals sauted in oil and coated in curry powder.

Brinjals are an all time favorite and render themselves to be cooked in a hundred different ways. It`s always been a pleasure for me to cook with good tender brinjals as they get done in minutes. I always pick up tender tiny brinjals from the Indian store or better still, use the Japanese Eggplant.  You can make Yennai Kathirikkai, Kathirkkai Podimas, Brinjal Pepper Kuzhambu , Kathirikkai Curry with  minimalistic masalas, vangibath, baingan bartha, baghara baingan, and Kathirikkai Poricha Kuzhambu. Each of them take a different taste because of the way they are concocted. My husband  loves the way, brinjals are cooked slowly over a medium flame and slathered with the mix of roasted spices. It`s also a favorite among my friends and a regular addition to all potlucks and get-togethers.

Brinjal Podimas.
Brinjal Podimas.

INGREDIENTS:

Brinjals/Eggplant            – Medium (10-12) or 1 Big Japanese Eggplant.

Salt

Hing

Seasoning:

Mustard, Oil, Urad Dhal, Curry Leaves.

ROAST IN OIL:

Boiled Rice          – 3 spoons

Bengal Gram      – 2 spoons

Dhania                  – 1 spooon

Red Chillis          – 4

Curry Leaves    – 3-4

Hing                      – A pinch.

PREPARATION:

  • Chop the brinjals in to slightly longer pieces as they cook very fast and you dont want them to get mushy.
  • Slow roast the mentioned ingredients in a spoon of oil, allow to cool and grind them to coarse powder and set aside. You can proportionately increase the measurements two fold depending on the number of eggplants. Extra powder can always get stored in an air tight container doubly sealed with cling film to contain the freshness and aroma of the ground powder.
  • Pour 2 spoons of oil in a kadai, season with mustard , urad dhal and curry leaves and throw in the chopped brinjal pieces.
  • Add salt, turmeric and hing and cook on medium flame for about ten minutes till the brinjals are cooked well.
  • Switch off stove and add ground powder for flavouring.
  • Garnish with chopped cliantro and serve HOT with Lemon rasam or Spinach Morkuzhambu.