Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Baingan phobia - My total recall

 Holding the hand of my grandfather, I was enjoying  my evening walk one sunday.  Being the first granddaughter, I was apple of his eye.   We went for a walk in our farm house and were nearing the garden.  The garden, appeared colourful with almost every vegetable one could find on market.  I was deeply enthused by one brightly coloured vegetable, and shedding away his hand, I tried to lean into the plant. By this time,  grandpa had warned me to be more careful, and then suddenly, the wicked thorny-stemed vegetable had stung me deep into my little finger.  I, cried an lot and ran into my grandpa, who by this time had hugged me and cursed the plant for its evil deed.

    For those, who by now wonder, what this dramatic flashback has to do with my post, yes, that thorny, wicked, totally gross  and evil-minded vegetable was none other than brinjal.  :D  :D    That terrible incident, shook my life away ( This itself shows how adament I am, ain't I?) and thereafter, I heavily refused to consume that vegetable.  My grandfather, tried to convince me an lot, but, in vain.

Twenty years after, now, I am still the same sarcastic, home-maker, who never hesitates to remove brinjals out of my plate, be it vaangi baath (delecious brinjal pulao), Kathirikkai masala (Brinjals cooked in spicy onion-tomato gravy), Baingan bharta (Brinjals stuffed with peanut-sesame seed masala and sauted)  Nevertheless, fate has an other side, isn't it?   :D   :D

     It was an fluke, when my husband had picked up, BBC GOOD FOOD Magazine, when he returned from airport, for me.  The magazine, had featured an entire article about Kolhapuri food, by Prachi agarwal.  I was dump-struck when I went through the same, and was thoroughly fascinated by the food and culture of Kolhapuri.  Following this, I prepared the famous kolhapuri masala, which was very aromatic and caught my attention.

 The book also included some vegetarian recipes to use with kolhapuri masala, bharali vaangi, being one of them.  Assuming that I will have only the gravy and will pack all brinjals into hubby's lunch-box, I, very cunningly, followed the recipe.

The recipe had called for green coloured brinjal (since bright purple ones are known to be slightly bitter).  Dried coconut, 1/4 cup grated, were blended with 2 tsp white sesame seeds and 4-5 garlic pods.  This blended mixture, was mixed with 50 gm coarsely crushed peanut (since I didn't have this one, I replaced by 11/2 tbspn of chunky peanut butter), 3 tsp kolhapuri masala,11/2 tsp haldi, 1 tsp jaggery,  finely chopped fresh coriander leaves,  and salt, to taste.

    The entire trick or taste of bharali vaangi lied in this filling.  I enjoyed stuffing them into my slit brinjals, which after an usual temper of  an tsp of mustard seeds and  2 cups of finely chopped onions, were pressure cooked for an whistle.

After following each and every step, very carefully, I,  released the pressure and opened the pan.  My god, this curry was full of flavours, and the very steam that ran through my face was enough to prove the same.

So, with an wavering mind, I packed the hubby's lunch box with half the curry and carried on my daily house-hold chores.  Picking up my toddler, from school, I fed her lunch and quickly ran through my kitchen counter to check for curry.  I poured this godly curry onto my plate along with varan baath (Paruppu saadham/ mildly tempered tuvar dal) and roti, which I had prepared to have along the curry.   Though varan baath  was my ultimate comfort food, Baingan curry got that delicate, punch of spicyness ending with an sweet touch.

 Varan bonded well with curry, yet,  it was the roti and curry, that stole my heart.   Very thoughtfully, I took an bite with almost mashed-up brinjal and wah re wah, what an wonder! Brinjal, which was partially mushy and  yet strong enough to hold the masala, completely melted in my mouth. Every single bite was mouth-watering and I, settled on carving for more and more.  My phone was ringing in unusal time, and to my surprise, it was my work-aholic hubby to appreciate the tasty brinjal curry (He doesnt generally call like that, to appreciate).

  I felt, like, sorry for ignoring brinjals all these years.  It was, like they were laughing at me, reminding of my foolishess.  I calmly apologized to them, taking each and every bite.  By the end of my lunch,  there was very little brinjal curry left  with no more pieces of roti.  I just sighed, that I should have prepared some more to cherish them :/   That day, I had heavily relished those godly baingan curry, which otherwise would have landed into garbage.

I, also wanted to present them with my borosil glassware. Those, under mixing bowls section,  caught my attention.  Don't you think these lovely, crystal clear bowls will set an fabulous meal?  I am sure, they do.  So, next time, I will plan to host my bharleli baingan with one.  Not only these bowls are presentable, they come with plastic lid, that makes them ideal for storing purpose.

 What's more, don't forget to hop on to their trend-setting dinnerwares you can select some matching to  your home interiors, and I am sure that would lighten up any perfect meal or for any desirable occasion.  I am eyeing this English Summer Melamine dinner set  from their own collections.  They look completely stylish, don't they?....

  Though this was my  hearty meal, my deepest regret would  be, to  have disagreed with my grandfather's opinion.  I do , wish sometimes, to walk with my grandfather through that very same garden lane, and run through those thorny, yet humble baingan plants, appreciate their nature and love them to the core - Baingans, YOU ROCK!  :D

This post, is linked for, 'My Beautiful food' organised by Indiblogger and borosil

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