My Ma being the magician she is, knows a few ways to make begun bartha. This recipe is one of those variations. It’s an Indian eggplant mash which if done well gets a nice smoky flavor and works great with naan. See notes below method about alternate ways depending on preference.
2 medium size eggplants (aubergine/brinjal)
½ onion, chopped, small
½ tomato, chopped small
1 t amchur (mango powder, if unavailable lemon juice can provide acidity)
1 T ginger
1/2 chili powder (or to taste)
salt to taste
1 t cumin powder
Method (please also see notes):
Preheat oven to 375. Chop eggplants in quarters lengthwise. Put pieces in an oven safe pan and place on rack. Cook around around 30 minutes. Flipping once. The idea is to partially cook and roast (slightly char the eggplant). Once done, transfer eggplant to cutting board and scoop out the eggplant flesh into a bowl and set aside. In a pan, add onion and tomatoes and cook on medium-low for 5-7 minutes until turning translucent. Add in eggplant and spices and mix well. Cook together for around 15 additional minutes. Mash with a masher. Serve hot with naan or rice.
Note 1: Time Saving Tip – Eggplant can be cooked in the microwave on high for 5-7 minutes (just cut in halves, score pieces with a knife and coat with a little oil).
Note 2: If preferred Eggplant can be grilled on a grill or over a burner for charring.