Can you believe this? I cannot not believe it myself, a self confessed Brinjal lover/addict could have gone all these years without trying Vaangi Baath, this famous member of Karnataka Cuisine?
Everybody has their favorite cook books and depending on the time you started using them, some have a special place in your heart. Mrs S. Mallika Badrinath's series of cook books are dear to me, especially the 100 Rice Delights - Variety Rice/Mixed rice genre of rice dishes for the ease speed and defintely the taste. Simple, precise instructions no fancy pictures. The other one in Tamil "Pavaiyarkana Palsuvai Malar" published by "Tuticorin Magalir Mandram" very basic but with a lot of information from beginner cooks to experts.
I looked up recipes for Vaangi Baath and checked my trusted cook books and finally settled on this combination. All the recipes called for cooking the rice separately and adding to the spice mix but I cooked the rice in the spice mix.
1. 2 long Purple Brinjals chopped into small pieces (any brinjal would work)
2. 1/2 Red Onion Chopped fine
3. 2 Green Chillies Slit
4. Seasonings cumin, curry leaves, cinnamon 1/2 inch piece broken
5. 2 tsp oil, 1/2 tsp ghee
6. 1 1/2 cups Basmati Rice (washed and soak for 10 minutes)
7. 2 1/4 Cups of Water [ 1: 1.5] [rice:Water]
8. 1 tbsp of sour curd (yogurt)
9. 6-8 broken cashews fried in a little bit of ghee for garnish
1. 2 tsp cumin
2. 1 tbsp corriander seeds
3. 2 Red Chillies
4. 1 tsp Peppercorn
5. few methi seeds
Dry roast the above and powder in a coffee grinder and set aside.
1. In a Pressure Cooker, heat the oil and ghee combination, add the cumin, mustard leaves and cinnamon pieces when they start to brown,
2. When you are doing this put the required amount of water for the rice to boil in a separate pan/kettle.
3. add the onion and fry till translucent, add the slit green chillies and saute
4. Now add the egg plants and saute for a few minutes, add salt and saute till the skin starts to turn color.
5. Now add the spice powder and mix well, add the the yogurt and mix well.
6. Add the drained rice and fry it for a few minutes.
7. Add the boiling water, check for salt and let it cook and when the rice is about 1/2 cooked give a good mix, close the lid, place the weight and cook in medium low heat for 5-6 minutes. Remove from fire immediately.
if not using pressure cooker, close the lid and let the rice cook for 6-8 minutes, check now and then so not to stick to the bottom.
8.Sprinkle the fried cashews on top and serve with onion-cucumber raita.