Almost every region in India has a traditional recipe for Eggplant roundels, either deep fried or pan fried. So while the Bengalis make a Begun Bhaja, you will find Baingan ke pakode up north and in Maharashtra we make Vangyache kaap. Recipes may vary according to regional tastes, availability of spices and personal preferences, but the basic idea remains centred around a soft piece of eggplant in the centre with a spicy, crunchy coating.
I had a fresh, long green-eggplant at home and wanted to make something quick with it for my lunchbox. Since it was really fresh, I decided to make the pan-grilled roundels using Vengi’s homemade masalas that I had written about in a previous post. This time, I used their marination masala, recommended originally for marinating fish or meat, but I used it for eggplants. If you don’t have the masala, you can substitute with a simple mixture of a pinch of turmeric, a teaspoon of red-chilly powder and 2 teaspoons of coriander and cumin seed powder.
1 long green eggplant, cut into 1cm thick roundels (you can use any available eggplant);
5 cloves of garlic and 1 inch pice of ginger, crushed together;
1 ½ tsp Vengi’s Marination masala;
Juice of ½ lemon, freshly squeezed;
Salt to taste;
Semolina (Rawa), for coating (can be substituted with rice flour or chickpea flour);
1tbsp oil, for pan frying.