Baingan, Chawli Beans Aur Kala Chana
My flatmate friend has just returned from a visit to her parents. Her mother has green fingers and successfully grows plenty of vegetables, fruits and flowers in their garden as well as a large terrace balcony.
This time round, some aubergine were brought back. They were quite unusual looking, pale violet, hefty bulbs.
The original idea was to make baingan bharta with the addition of some black chickpea (kala chana) and, to that end, I had even soaked some of the legume. But when it came to cooking time, I felt that the aubergine were more suited to a curry and so I literally made up the following recipe as I went along, with whatever was found in the cupboard and refrigerator.
the end result was totally yummy and satisfying
Goes very well with, both, rice and bread.
Don’t be put off by the amount of garlic – it makes all the difference to the dish.
1 Cup dry black chickpea (kala chana)*
150 Grams aubergine
250 Grams string beans (chawli beans)
2 Ripe tomato
1 Cup fresh coriander
2 Heads of garlic
2 Tablespoons freshly grated coconut
2 Tablespoons powder of roasted peanut
1-2 Teaspoons paste of ginger and green chilli
1-2 Teaspoons carom seeds
A large pinch of asafoetida
1 Teaspoon turmeric powder
1 Tablespoon coriander powder
1 Tablespoon cumin powder
Salt to taste
1 Tablespoon oil
- Soak the black chickpea for 8 hours.
- Add a pinch of salt and boil them till tender. You can either do this in a pressure cooker or over the stove.
- Drain and keep aside. Reserve the cooking liquor.
- Chop and wash the string beans.
- Peel and slice the garlic along its length.
- Wash and dice the tomato.
- Chop and wash the coriander.
- Dice the aubergine and leave it covered in water.
- Heat the oil in a wok like pan.
- When it is hot, lower the heat and add the carom seeds followed by asafoetida.
- Stir for 30 seconds.
- Add the chopped string beans along with about a cup of the chickpea cooking liquor and salt to taste.
- Cover and cook for 5 minutes.
- Next, add the aubergine, ginger-green chilli paste, turmeric powder, coriander powder and cumin powder.
- Mix well, cover and cook for about 10 minutes.
- Uncover and throw in the cooked black chickpea, diced tomato, grated coconut and powdered peanut.
- Cover and cook for 5 to 10 minutes till the vegetables are tender.
- Stir in the coriander and serve hot.
- You can use canned chickpea if you prefer. You can also substitute chickpea with any other type of dry beans.