September 15, 2011

Basic Eggplant/Brinjal Chutney

At the end of the day, a tired cook often thinks of dinner of buying some prepared foods. Sitting in not-so-far-away Bangalore, peeping out of our french window, the rain falling pitter-patter all over the horizon, I think of my mom's easy-to-prepare, filling home cooked meal - hot rice cooking in the rice cooker, a simple yet delicious eggplant/tomato/toor dal chutney, papads with tomato rasam and yogurt. For me, rasam and papads are each other's buds, friendship-made-in-heaven.

Today, I am sharing with you all one such chutney which can be made on a whim, anytime of the day as it doesn't need many ingredients, but flavorful nonetheless. Also, for the keen gardeners among us, chutney is an ideal way to use up excess home-grown eggplants (or any other veggies) and it stays good at least for a week, when stored in refrigerator.

There were times when I literally licked the spoon sitting on the kitchen counter, right beside my mother when she made this eggplant chutney for us. It is a silken delight with a faint hum of tamarind and a zing of curry leaves. Tastes delicious when served with hot rice & ghee. I use the left-over chutney (if any) as a spread for my sandwiches as well.


Basic Eggplant Chutney [Vankaya Pachadi]

Recipe Source: My Mom


6 eggplants/brinjals (preferably long green/purple ones), cut into pieces
4 tsp canola oil
salt - to taste
1/8 tsp turmeric
1 tbsp (or more) red chilli powder
2 tbsp or lemon size tamarind

For tadka:

1 tsp oil
little asafetida (hing)
1/2 tsp of each - urad dal, mustard seeds, jeera.
few curry leaves


1. Heat oil in a pan and add eggplant pieces, salt, turmeric, red chilli powder and tamarind. Cover the pan with a plate filled with water and cook on low-medium heat until the eggplant is completely cooked. Mix once or twice in the middle.Cool and grind into chutney-like paste. Adjust salt, if needed.

2. Heat a small pan for tadka and add all the ingredients listed above. carefully add curry leaves as they tend to splutter in oil. Mix this into the chutney. Serve.

This is my entry for Back 2 Basics: Chutneys guest hosted by me this month, originally conceptualized by Jaya, the Desi Soccer Mom. Send in your entries too. Will ya? Last Date for participation is October 7th 2011.

Some Weekend Reading:

Everybody is busy ok? - a hilarious post by the very famous The Local Tea Party
Speaking of Writer's Block - The New Yorker
An Epicurean Pilgrimage: Meals Worth the Price of a Plane Ticket - NYT
Chez Panisse: Forty Years Later - Ruth Reichl
Sam Sifton is Out As Times Food Critic - The Atlantic Wire

until next time,

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  1. Your chutney looks and sounds so delicious! Hot rice with ghee and this chutney would be comfort food for me!

  2. Hey Siri, eggplany chutney can be coupled with many South indian dishes. And I can see from the picture that it is something i would lick the spoon clean too. I had sent you a message about the event, got my answer here...sending mine soon!

  3. Not a big fan of eggplant,but that bowl of chutney looks yum.and rasam and papad?that would make for a dee-lee-cious meal:)

  4. Wow this is something new.I have to try it.Thanks for the recipe.

  5. Such a delectable chutney. The eggplant sounds like the main event here and I would love to try it.

  6. I absolutely love eggplant, any kind, roasted, any way really. I've never had it "chutney style" though. I could eat this with some wheat thins?

  7. Wow what is simple but jiffy recipe. Love it. Guess it will make appearances in my family too often till the kids catch on as to what it is.

    Do check out my event and send me your entries.

  8. Delicious!! I am a great eggplant fan :) will have to try this recipe asap!

  9. Hey siri! I just made this chutney, with thai eggplants. Looks good. Lets say what the husband says ;)

  10. This was sooooooo good!!!!!!!!!!!!! Just made it and definitely making it again!


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