Have you tried making brinjal chops?

Brinjal is popularly known as aubergine in the western world or eggplant in some countries. It is a very low calorie vegetable with a good nutrition profile. High in water content and potassium, it is said to possess several medicinal properties and is used as a remedy for cancer, hypertension and diabetes. It is native to the Indian subcontinent and is grown in many tropical and semitropical regions as well. Depending on the cultivar, brinjals vary in size, shape and colour. Generally, they are oval-shaped, or thin and elongated, and available in various colours such as purple, green and white-purple. Always buy firm, shiny, bright-coloured fruits that feel heavy and solid. Take a close look at the stalk; if it is stout, firm, and green it means the fruit is fresh. Avoid shrivelled, soft and wrinkled fruit, surface cuts or bruises, over-mature and sunken brinjals as they taste bitter.

Brinjals can be stewed, fried, roasted, baked or ground and feature in a variety of Indian recipes such as beguni bhaja in Bengal, baingan ka bharta in Punjab, baghare baingan in Andhra Pradesh and ennai kathirikkai in Tamil Nadu. In southern Europe, Turkey and the Middle-East aubergines are used in variety of delicious recipes such as mousaka and baba ghanoush.

Now, for a recipe.

Kathirikkai Chops

Ingredients

Brinjal: 500 gm

Coconut: 100 gm

Cinnamon: 2 small sticks

Ginger: 1 inch piece

Garlic: 2 to 3 cloves

Green chilli: 3 to 4

Oil: 100 ml

Onions: half, chopped

Tomatoes: half, chopped

Salt as per taste

Method: Wash the brinjal and make two slits lengthwise till the stalk. Keep aside. Grind together coconut, ginger, garlic, cinnamon and green chillies to a fine paste. Stuff the brinjal with the ground paste. Heat a kadai on moderate flame. Add oil and sauté the onions and tomatoes. Add salt to taste. Add brinjal and sauté for about five minutes. Add a little water and cook till it becomes soft and cooked. Don’t add more water. The dish should be dry. Serve hot.

Executive Chef, Vivanta by Taj – Connemara

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