All posts tagged: Eggplant

Caponata – Italian Eggplant Antipasto

When I hear the word Caponata, the first thing that pops into my head is a Godfather-esque movie that has its origins in some remote fishing village in Sicily. For all my romanticism with gangster style movies, this Caponata is actually quite harmless. Dark, Complex, Delicious and even originating from Sicily…but definitely harmless.

Baingan Bharta (Indian Spiced Aubergine/ Eggplant Mash)

Baingan Bharta is something that I was introduced to seven years ago. (Basically, ever since I started working and it was de rigueur to have lunch in the office cafeteria!). The cafeteria food sucked. And day after day it was pure torture to let the undercooked, over spiced, all-round-sad food enter our mouths. I could have opted to take a lunchbox from home, but it was just too much work in the morning. (Besides, in those days I thought I was too cool for a lunch box!). So it was almost a godsend when a little Dhaba (highway or roadside restaurant; very popular in the North of India) opened up next to office. This was run by a Punjabi family who served home style meals at a modest price. (Which suited our pockets just fine!). They had a fixed menu written on a black board everyday and fixed quantities that would run out if you reached later than 1:30 pm. So we religiously moved our lunch break to 12:30pm and ensured we got the pick …


So what exactly is Babaganoush? (Ba-ba-ga-nuj). Sounds exotic I know – Like a word that twirls around in your mouth and takes you to some strange colorful dream in the Arabian nights. Well, Babaganoush is a Lebanese dip, a cousin of my favorite dip – Hummus. The hero of this recipe is the lovely aubergine/eggplant. The eggplant is broiled/roasted over an open flame before peeling and mashing, so that the pulp has a nice smokey taste which is characteristic of this dip. The process is very similar to cooking our Baingan ka Barta in India. We mix it with tomatoes, garlic and onion paste and eat it with rotis or naan. The Lebanese mix it with Tahini and lemon juice and eat it with pita. It’s a small world! But the end result either way – is a glorious, smokey, silky pate that has everyone begging for more.   Babaganoush Prep time: 15 mins Resting time: 10 mins Makes: 8 servings What you need: 1 big Eggplant ¼ cup Tahini (roasted white sesame paste) ¾ tsp …