Vankai Pachadi or Vankaya chutney has a special place in our home...which means its gets over the day its made.
I usually make it with the big eggplant or brinjal not the small ones or the long ones. This is because, we get more flesh from the bigger ones. Back home in India, the eggplant is roasted on coal, wood, more like smoked to get the 'kalchina' flavor.
But here since we can only do that in the summer times on the grill, I cook the brinjal in a easier way...in the microwave. YOU can surely cooked on the gas top or even in the oven. But cooking in the microwave is much easier.
There are so many ways this pachadi is made, but in our house we like the texture of the raw onions, green chillies and tempering with hing (inguva or asfoetida).
The roasted eggplant is also ground to a smooth paste in some recipes, but I don't like it that way....so I mix it with my hand by squeezing it. It stays mostly chunky and fibrous type which I think is more flavorful.
Its quick to make and goes good with chapathis, rotis and hot rice. Makes for a good side dish for pot luck too!
1 big eggplant, vankai, brinjal, vankaya
1 big onion, chopped into small pieces
4-6 green chillies, chopped small
2-3 tbsp thick tamarind juice squeezed from pulp
1 tbsp oil
1/2 tsp urad daal
1/2 tsp channa daal
1/4 tsp mustard seeds, avaalu
1/4 tsp jeera seeds, cumin
big pinch of hing, inguva, asfoetida
2-3 dry red chillies, broken to pieces
5-6 curry leaves
salt to taste
1 tbsp chopped coriander leaves
Wash the eggplant. With a knife, poke holes into it on all side. This can also be done with a fork.
Put it in a plate and microwave for about 8-10 minutes until it gets cooked and soft.
Let it cool down and then peel the skin, trying to get as much of the flesh off the skin as possible.
Mix in the chopped onion and green chillies. Add in the tamarind juice too and mix well with hand by squeezing the eggplant flesh with the onions and chillies. Add salt.
Heat oil in a tempering pan. Add the channa daal, urad daal and saute till brown. Add the mustard seeds, jeera and let them splutter. Add the dry red chillies and hing along with curry leaves. When they splutter, add this tempering mixture to the eggplant.
Mix well. Mix in the chopped coriander leaves.
Serve as it is with rice, rotis or chapathis. Enjoy!!!