Baigan choka is similar to baba ganoush but it contains roasted tomato and has less seasoning. It is a robust side dish that is served as a vegetarian spread for flatbread or sada roti. It is an easy to make dish that requires little time to put together.
Roasted eggplant is referred to by many names such as aubergine, balanjay, brinjal and melongene. Since this dish is quite popular, there are various ways of cooking it. The eggplant can be roasted either in the oven, on the stove top or on an open grill. The best way to roast eggplant is to wrap it twice in aluminum foil and place it on the stove top. Although this method is more time consuming, the eggplant will have a nice charcoal and smoky flavor.
Traditionally, baigan choka is topped off with a little oil but butter is also tasty. Add some roasted garlic and tomatoes and you will have a very appetizing dish with a unique flavor.
- 1 large eggplant
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1 medium tomato (seeded and cut into 6 wedges)
- 1/4 cup onion, chopped fine
- 1/8 teaspoon scotch bonnet pepper, minced (optional)
- Salt and black pepper, to taste
- 2 teaspoons oil, melted butter or ghee
- Wash the eggplant thoroughly.
- Wrap the eggplant two times in aluminum foil. For easy handling, make two handles on the side to so you can rotate the eggplant while roasting.
- Roast the eggplant for 30 minutes on stove top. You can also bake the eggplant if preferred. Bake at 450°F for 30 minutes or until soft.
- Cut the heads off of the garlic cloves and wrap in aluminum foil. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes at 400°F.
- Wrap the tomato in aluminum foil. Roast on stove top on a separate burner or with the eggplant for approximately 30 minutes.
- When the eggplant is done roasting, open the foil and make a slit down the center. Scoop out the insides of the eggplant and place into a large bowl. Using a fork, mash the eggplant until smooth. Set aside.
- When the garlic and tomato are finished roasting, remove the skin. In a separate bowl, mash thoroughly. Add the mixture to the eggplant.
- Add salt and black pepper to taste. Mix in the oil, butter, oil, or ghee to the eggplant.
- Stir in sliced onions and scotch bonnet pepper.
- Serve hot with sada roti or your favorite bakes.
- For a nice variation, add fresh thyme to the dish after it is cooked and mashed. You can also lightly cook the onions if preferred. Sauté the onions until they are fragrant but not translucent. You want them a little crunchy but they will not have the sharp onion flavor.
- You can also mash the roasted eggplant, tomato and garlic in a food processor or blender if you like the dish extra smooth.