Event: Blogging Marathon
Theme: Regional Cooking
In traditional Andhra cuisine, eggplants / brinjals are put on a pedestal when compared to it's native counterparts. There are several classic preparations in the region using eggplants and gutti vankaya happens to be one of them. Eggplants are stuffed with a spice powder and cooked until tender in guttivankaya preparation. The stuffing can vary in everyday cooking depending upon one's mood. We mostly prepare dry versions like this or with besan, though I have seen gravy versions of it. Today's version is where the eggplants are cooked with the classic koora podi - curry powder if loosely translated
Six baby eggplants
3 Tbsp oil
1/4 cup chanadal
2 Tbsp uard dal / skinned black gram
2 Tbsp coriander seeds
8 - 10 red chilles (Adjust as needed)
1/4 cup grated, dried coconut
Salt to taste
Preparation of stuffing:
* Toast chana dal and urad dal separately on medium flame in a saute pan until they start turning reddish brown.
* Saute the coriander seeds till they turn slightly brownish and add the red chillies at the end.
* Cool and grind all the ingredients into a fine powder. This can be prepared in advance and stored in an air tight container.
* Wash eggplants and wipe them dry. I haven't removed the stalks here but they can be cut off if preferred.
* Keeping the base intact, cut twice vertically like a + shape, as shown in the picture. Fill them with the spice powder as shown. You can fill as much as the eggplants can hold without spilling. If the filling gets spilled over the surface of the eggplant, wipe it clean.
* At this point, if you wish, you can spray the eggplants with oil.
* Heat a deep pan and add oil. Drop the eggplants carefully. If you have not sprayed oil, just tilt them in the pan so that they are coated with oil.
* Lower the flame, cover and let it cook until all the eggplants are tender to touch. Keep stirring in between for uniform cooking.
* When they are done, sprinkle some more powder on it and fry for few seconds. Add extra salt if needed at this point.
* Remove and serve with warm rice and ghee.
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