Minty Eggplant Masala


Vegan recipe for Brinjal Masala

This minty Eggplant Masala is something I threw together one weeknight when I didn’t have much time to fuss with a new recipe, yet wanted to try something different.

I love mint. It’s cooling properties are priceless in summer, and what’s more, it’s a wonderfully unfussy herb that grows with minimal care. I had planted some mint years ago, and when we moved, I brought it with me and plunked it into a corner of my backyard. It comes back year after year, giving me more goodness than I can handle. In fact, right now, it’s threatening to take over the entire vegetable patch.

In Indian cuisine, mint is a commonly used herb. In our kitchen, it comes second only to coriander or cilantro in frequency of use. It’s great in chutneys and marinades, but the easiest way to get a hit of minty fresh goodness is to use it as a garnish in curries and subzis. You cannot miss.

For my Eggplant Masala, I blended the mint with the other masala ingredients and cooked it. Its soothing flavor dovetailed nicely with the spices and the sweetness of the jaggery. I also broiled the eggplant first because that gives it a velvety texture and also helps reduce the cooking time because the eggplant can cook in the oven during the time you put together the rest of the recipe.

So here it is. Enjoy!

Minty Baingan Masala:

Ingredients:

2 medium eggplants, preferably with tender flesh like Italian or Lavender Touch, cut into 3/4 cm-thick rings.

1 cup mint leaves

1 tbsp canola oil + 1 tsp

4 cloves

4 cardamom pods

1-inch stick of cinnamon

1 tbsp coriander seeds

1/2 tsp turmeric

1 tsp red chili powder

2 medium tomatoes, diced

1 medium onion, diced

3 cloves garlic, sliced

2-3 tbsp jaggery (unrefined Indian sugar), grated

Toss the eggplants with about 1 tsp oil and a pinch of salt and arrange in a single layer on a non-stick rack (you can use a baking sheet, but a rack is more effective in preventing the eggplant from sticking)

Broil in the oven for between-10 minutes or until the eggplant is lightly browned and almost tender

Meanwhile, heat half of the 1 tbsp of oil and saute the coriander, cloves, cinnamon and cardamom for about 2-3 minutes until fragrant. Drain and remove from the pan to a blender.

In the same skillet, saute the onions and garlic until browned on the edges. Also remove to a blender.

Add the tomatoes to the skillet and toss for a couple of minutes until they begin to soften. Add to the blender along with the mint leaves.

Blend the ingredients, adding a little water, until they make a fairly smooth paste.

Cut the grilled eggplant rings into quarters

Heat the remaining oil in the skillet.

Add the ground masala and stir for a few minutes. Then add the eggplant. Simmer together on low heat, about 10 minutes, adding some water if necessary to keep the sauce slightly fluid. Add the jaggery.

Add salt to taste. Garnish with coriander if desired.

Serve hot with chapatis or rotis.

Tip: This tastes even better the next day.

(C) All recipes and photographs copyright of Holy Cow! Vegan Recipes.

13 thoughts on “Minty Eggplant Masala

  1. Permalink  ⋅ Reply

    notyet100

    August 24, 2008 at 7:18am

    nice one,…hppy janmasthami….will try this one looks delicious,..

  2. Permalink  ⋅ Reply

    Pearlsofeast

    August 24, 2008 at 8:28am

    Sounds Great vaishali,all your ingredients are complementing each other.
    I love mint flavour and it does change the taste of the dish.

  3. Permalink  ⋅ Reply

    Jayashree

    August 24, 2008 at 9:22am

    I love mint too and i like the way you’ve combined it with eggplant.

  4. Permalink  ⋅ Reply

    ChocolateCoveredVegan

    August 24, 2008 at 1:28pm

    Gosh, there are so many recipes of yours I want to try… I’m adding this one to my “to-make” list (it’s quite long, because I’m quite lazy!)

  5. Permalink  ⋅ Reply

    delhibelle

    August 24, 2008 at 1:40pm

    Yum..another eggplant dish,you do them so well.
    Love the addition of mint.

  6. Permalink  ⋅ Reply

    Priyanka

    August 24, 2008 at 1:42pm

    Vaishali, went through a lot of recipes on your blog…the mediterranean hummus- loved both the versions, also your rice salad is pretty unique. and the eggplant sabzi has got a pretty unique twist to it. will be trying out the sabzi and the hummus pretty soon.

  7. Permalink  ⋅ Reply

    Alka

    August 24, 2008 at 2:50pm

    It looks really inviting….mint do give a fresh flavor to any dish..will surely try out this lovely combo

  8. Permalink  ⋅ Reply

    Madhavi

    August 25, 2008 at 5:28pm

    Great recipe Vaishali, eggplant with mint hummm sounds and look delicious!!!

  9. Permalink  ⋅ Reply

    Miri

    August 26, 2008 at 6:59am

    always looking for eggplant recipes and this one looks really interesting – will try it this week!

  10. Permalink  ⋅ Reply

    Anonymous

    October 28, 2011 at 9:04pm

    am i missing something? i can’t see any mint in the ingredients or instructions?

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