Winter is fabulous, and has all the stuff I love, cold, rain, and fog. But, it also has all those pesky stress inducing holidays. At our house that includes all the usual suspects plus Alans' birthday and our wedding anniversary (don't know what I was thinking when I planned a December wedding.) Spring has rain, rain, rain, mud and flowers coming up, wonderful tender young vegetables but that dang summer is right behind and I just can't forget.
I am an autumn.
Remember those late night TV info-mercials about finding your color? Are you a Spring, a Winter, a Summer or a Fall? Usually it was hosted by some lady who was buried in a mountain of neck scarves and a couple of coats of spackle passing for blush.
But seasonal beauty hints aside, we are now smack dab in the middle of Autumn for real, and all that that implies. Around here, one of the main things is eggplant, fire roasted eggplant. I've cooked eggplant in a variety of ways in all the years I've been cooking Indian food, and flame roasting it is one of my favorite ways to go. Prepared this way, eggplant can be an appetizer, a side dish, and even a flatbread or pizza topping. Also, it makes up quickly which is always a plus in these pre holiday, sports watching, days.
Flame Roasted Eggplant With Spices, Coconut, and Buttermilk
Here's What You Need:
1 large eggplant
5 dried red chilies
1 tsp of black mustard seeds
1/2 cup of grated fresh or frozen coconut or dried unsweetened coconut
4 whole shallots
1 and 1/2 tsp of salt
1 cup of buttermilk
2 tsp of vegetable oil (I use coconut oil)
Here's What To Do:
Rub the eggplants with a bit of vegetable oil.
Place the eggplant directly on a grill or over the flame of your stove.
(You can also roast them on a cookie sheet on the top rack of a 450 degree oven)
Roast them until the skin is charred on the outside. Rotate them as you cook.
Let them cool and then peel away the charred skin.
Mash the eggplant, put it in a bowl, and set it aside.
Put 3 of the dried chilies, 1/2 tsp of mustard seed, coconut, shallots, 1/2 tsp of salt and 1/2 cup of water in a blender, grinder or food processor.
Grind it all to a fine paste.
Pour the buttermilk into the eggplant and stir it in.
Add in 1 tsp of salt.
Add in the ground spice coconut paste.
Set it aside.
In a small pan or skillet, heat 2 Tsp of vegetable oil.
When the oil is hot toss in 1/2 tsp of mustard seeds.
When the seeds start to pop, tear up the last 2 red chilies and drop them into the pan.
Saute everything for about 30 seconds.
Pour the hot oil, and spices into the eggplant buttermilk mixture then cover the pan so that the heat and spices permeate the eggplant.
Let it rest for a bit, then take the lid off and serve it up.
Coming up next, rooting for root vegetables more fall specials and fun with turnips. Yes, turnips. Follow along on Twitter @kathygori