Indian Eggplant Stew – Bhurtha

Indian food is generally really good for you, besides the jolting to the lav. (Oh and Indian on Valentine’s Day makes for an interesting experience) Some of the best spices commingle within one dish, i.e. turmeric, cinnamon, cumin… And adding them, in general, to your diet can support a heart healthy lifestyle. You really feel it pumpin’ when the sweat starts dripping down your face.

The moral here: Americans should be relying more on nature’s goodies rather than the shit that comes out of factories’ arses. (I’m hostile!)

This dish comes from my love of curry and veggies. The spices are adjustable, but a starch or yogurt is advisable for cutting the heat. I included chickpeas for wholesome goodness.

Indian Eggplant Stew – Bhurtha

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2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 eggplant
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 medium onion, sliced
1 teaspoon chopped fresh ginger
1 large tomato – peeled, seeded and diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 tsp curry
7oz can whole, peeled tomato
1 tsp lemon juice
salt to taste
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 can of chickpeas (optional)

Yogurt for serving

Preheat the oven’s broiler. Rub oil on the outside of the egg plant, or coat with cooking spray. Place under the broiler, and cook until the flesh is soft and the skin is blistering off, about 30 minutes. Turn as needed for even cooking. Cut the eggplant in half lengthwise, and scoop the flesh out of the skin. Discard the skin; chop up the flesh, and set aside.

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Heat the oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Add the cumin seeds, and let them crackle for a few seconds and turn golden brown.Be careful not to burn them.

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Add the onion, ginger and garlic; cook and stir until tender. I don’t let the onions get very brown. Stir in the tomato, and season with turmeric, ground cumin, ground coriander, cayenne pepper, salt and black pepper. Cook and stir for a few minutes.

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Place the eggplant pieces in the skillet, and cook for 10 to 15 minutes so some of the moisture evaporates. Taste, and adjust seasonings if desired. Garnish with fresh cilantro, and serve.

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