Bhartha is a tasty smokey mashed Indian style babaganoush. Its flavored with sautéed onions, ginger, cumin, green chillies, tomatoes, cilantro and turmeric. There are many variations here is how I make it. It can be an accompaniment to an Indian meal or makes a delicious dip to be scooped with naan bread.
It also makes a great sandwich spread
You will need
2 large eggplants. Look for ones heavy for their size
1 medium- large onion chopped
1-2 hot green chillies like jalapeño or 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder or toy our liking
3-4 fresh tomatoes chopped
2 inch piece ginger finely chopped
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
Handful of cilantro leaves chopped
Juice from half a lemon
1/2 cup peas optional
2 tablespoons grapeseed oil or any neutral oil that you normally use
- Set your oven at 375F. Then turn the oven to low broil after you place the eggplant in the oven.
- Carefully stab the eggplant a few places and place them on a baking tray. This prevents steam buildup and exploding in the oven, it actually happened to me.
- Grill the eggplant till it’s completely charred all over. Takes about 40 minutes to an hour. Turn them as they char. Cool the eggplant, remove the blackened skin and scoop the pulp. (alternately you could do it on a barbeque). Set aside.
- In a pan warm the oil. Sauté chopped onion and ginger. When the onion starts to pick color and softens, add the spices and green chillies. Stir for a minute. Followed by chopped tomatoes and salt. Stir on medium heat, cook for 5-6 minutes till the mixture cooks down and moisture has reduced. Now add eggplant pulp. Mash and mix it with the back of your spoon till it’s well incorporated. ( Ive seen the eggplant pulp been pureed in a blender, I prefer a chunky texture) Add peas if you want for added nutrition and color. Cook for another minute. Garnish with cilantro and lime juice. Serve with any bread.