Spicy Brinjal Curry... to entice your tastebuds:)

I cook, cook and cook... all kinds of food... but finally when I make something South Indian, that is comfort to me. Comfort Food. To make me feel that the world is a safer place. When I feel tired, stressed, lonely or sad. This is it.

This brinjal delicacy is tangy and spicy. And most of all, lovely:) It is pretty much made in every South Indian household, especially in Tamil Nadu, and that is why I feel I am treading dangerous grounds... I dont belong there. I come from further 'down'... Kerala. Still, it reminds me of home, whenever I make it.

I have seen and tasted this dish quite a number of times and taken down the recipe another few number of times, and have finally come up with my own way of making it. That I feel comfortable with.

Baby Brinjals - 10
Shallots (small onions) - 6 or 7 whole (If I dont have shallots in hand, I just chop fine a medium onion)
Tamarind - 1 small lime sized ball, soaked in water and juice extracted
Turmeric Powder - 1/4 tsp
Red Chilly Powder - 1/2 tsp (optional, only applicable to people who love the spice!)
Oil and Salt.

To roast in a little oil and grind:
Grated Coconut or Dessicated Coconut - 1/2 cup
Chana Dal - 1/2 tsp
Urad Dal - 1/2 tsp
Peppercorns - 4-5
Whole Red Chillies - 3-4 (depending on your spice tolerance)
Coriander Seeds - 1 tbsp
Curry leaves - 5-6 leaves
Tomato - 1 medium, cut into pieces.

For Tempering:
Mustard Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Urad Dal - 1/2 tsp
Dry Red Chillies - 2
Curry Leaves - 1 sprig

Wash the brinjals well and make a cross on them and keep them aside.
Heat a little oil in a pan to roast the ingredients that needs to be roasted and ground.
Add the coconut, followed by the rest of the ingredients except the tomatoes and salt.
Roast till they turn light brown in colour and lets out a pleasing aroma.
Take them off the pan. To the same oil, add the tomatoes and fry till they become soft. Let them cool.
Put all the roasted ingredients plus the tomatoes into a blender and blend well adding enough salt to it.
Marinate the brinjals with this mixture and keep aside.

Heat oil in a pan for tempering. Add the mustard seeds to it. As they crackle, add the urad dal, followed by the red chillies and curry leaves.
As they turn aromatic, add the whole shallots to it. Fry for a minute. Add the turmeric and red chilly powder, if using. Add the marinated brinjals along with any left over blended masala. Fry for 3-4 minutes.
Add 1 cup of water. Check salt. Add salt if need be. Cover and cook till the brinjals are done.
Add the tamarind extract, checking cautiously, so that the tanginess is not overdone (remember the tomatoes!).
Give it a boil. Keep on medium flame till the gravy reaches a thick, but flowing consistency.
If it gets too thick add a little water and check salt.
Serve with rice.

Note: Alternatively,you can do the tempering in the end. Proceed with the recipe, by adding the onions first, till the end. After the curry is done, heat a little oil, add the ingredients for the tempering, crackle them and add it into the curry. I prefer getting it done along the way and not adding up a job in the end.

This is a regular kitchen fall-back alternative for me, as it is most welcoming, home-coming!
As I said before, my comfort. Comfort Food!

Lots of love and happiness:)


sandya said…
A perfect combination for rotis:)
Radhika said…
The curry looks very spicy and appetising. Perfect to go with rice.
Event : Let’s Cook – Greens
First time here...
curry looks delicious
glad to follow u :)
Vimitha Anand said…
curry looks yummy n spicy... nice one
Vardhini said…
Inviting curry .. perfect with rice.

Event: Fenugreek
Asha Kiran said…
shyndu said…
I tried your recipe...it was good..thanks😊

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