Serve me eggplants is any style, I eat it up. Make it anyway- baked, grilled, roasted, deep-fried, sautéed, stuffed, or in this case – smoked, this loyal vegetable never fails the taste buds. Naturally, it is a staple food in my kitchen but it has never occurred to me to write a post on this versatile vegetable. So, when Azita said that she also likes eggplants in every which way, I decided to get this recipe onto this blog. For Azita’s recipe of yummy picked Persian style eggplant, check here.
Note: Traditionally the eggplants are either cooked directly over fire or grilled over charcoal, and when made this way, the dish is infused with the smoky flavor that I find so wonderful. In absence of a cook top that runs on a gas, an alternative is to use the outdoor grill on fire or the oven. Broiling imparts the smoky flavor to an extent.
- 2 Large Aubergine
- 1 Cup Fresh Curd/ Yogurt
- Coriander (Handful)
- 3 Green chillies
- Salt (to taste)
- Coriander seeds-Coarsely crushed (optional)
- 1 Tbsp Oil
- 2 Dry red chillies
- Few curry leaves
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- A pinch of asafoetida
- Brush the eggplants lightly with oil. Punch holes with a fork or a knife tip.
- Scorch the eggplants by holding them over medium gas flame. Using tongs, turn them periodically so that they are done evenly inside. Alternatively, heat them under the broiler. (Even a plain roasting at 375° F also would work). Keep turning them until the skin is blackened on all sides.
- Set aside until cool, peel of the charred skin and mash lightly. I prefer leaving off specks of the charred skin to the eggplant, as they add to the pleasant smoky flavor.
- Combine the chilli, coriander leaves and the seeds in a blender and grind to a coarse paste. I used my stone mortar and pestle to get the right consistency, but a blender would work.
- Whisk the yogurt lightly.
- Add the yogurt and the chilli-coriander paste to the mashed eggplant.
- Heat oil in a pan, add the mustard seeds. When they start spluttering follow with the remaining ingredients.
- Add the entire seasoning to the eggplant yogurt mix.
- Sprinkle some freshly cut coriander leaves.
- This dish of total awesomeness goes well with rice and roti.
Am I the only one who dreams about how a certain recipe tastes? I guess not. I recently came across an email from Taste of Home on Lavender Lemon Bars. Even without reading the entire recipe, I fell in love with it. I was dreaming about how it would taste and could almost taste it on my tongue. Now, don’t be so surprised, for I never had a lemon bar before, forget it with lavender. I was sure that the sweet taste of lavender would perfectly complement the tartness of the lemon and it sounded like heaven.
I tried it out this weekend (having ordered for the lavender buds on Amazon.com) and it did not disappoint me or my family.
Lavender Lemon Bars Recipe
For the Crust:
- 3/4 cup butter, softened
- 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons dried lavender flowers
- 2 teaspoons lemon peel-grated
- 1-1/4 cups sugar
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- Substitute for 4 eggs (see the note below)
- 1/3 cup lemon juice
- Confectioners’ sugar for dusting
Note: I do not use eggs and as a substitute, I have added 1 tsp of Baking Powder and 1/4 tsp baking soda to 1 cup of yogurt, let it sit for 3 min till it froths up. For those of you who use egg, actual recipe calls for 4 eggs.
- In a small bowl, cream butter and confectioners’ sugar. Add the flour, lavender and lemon peel; beat until crumbly.
- Fill a13-in. x 9-in. baking pan and pat till even.
- Bake at 350° for 15 minutes or until edges are golden brown.
- Meanwhile, in a another bowl, combine the sugar, flour, baking soda, the yogurt mix/eggs and lemon juice; beat until frothy.
- Pour over the warm crust. Bake at 350° for about 25 minutes or until light golden brown.
- Cool on a wire rack.
- Dust with confectioners’ sugar.
Aloo Gobi (Cauliflower and Potato curry) a North Indian curry- a comfort food. It is one of my all time favorites and a dish that I make regularly.
The original version to make from the scratch takes some time like most of the other Indian recipes. So, it is natural that when I came across Suvir Saran’s recipe for oven roasted style, I literally jumped with joy. The recipe is super easy, takes less time than the original one and tastes just as good. Mine tasted even better!
- 3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 cardamom pods
- 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 head cauliflower torn into medium florets
- 2 Medium potatoes- chopped
- 1 medium red onion, thinly sliced
- Coarse salt
- Red Pepper powder
- Turmeric powder (optional)
- Coriander leaves for garnish
For Seasoning (Totally optional)
- 1 Tbsp Olive oil
- 1/2 Tsp mustard seeds
- 1/2 Tsp cumin seeds
- Curry leaves
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Brush a gratin dish or any large baking dish with olive oil and set aside.
- Coarsely grind cardamom, cumin, coriander. I used a pestle and mortar.
- Arrange potatoes, onions and cauliflower in a large dish. Add oil, spices, salt and turmeric. Toss to coat.
- Transfer vegetables to the baking dish.
- Roast until tender for about 30-40 min stirring in between.
- Season with salt and pepper powder.
- Transfer to a serving dish.
Optional step: In a small pan heat some oil, add mustard seeds and cumin seeds. Let them splutter. Add curry leaves. Add to the roasted vegetables and mix well.