Main Courses, Vegetarian

Bharta

Cooks in 2 Hours, 10 Minutes Difficulty Medium 0 comments
Baingan ka Bharta is a traditional Punjabi dish eaten in the winters

I LOVE bharta! It’s creamy, smoky, flavorful, and meaty for a vegetarian dish.

I’m not sure which came first, baba ghanoush or bharta, but they’re both amazing. And luckily for me, one is Punjabi and I know how to make it. It’s a crowd pleaser, whether for a nice cozy dinner at home or a fun dinner party. The dish that’s a bit of an all-arounder, meaning that you could make it as part of the main course or to serve as a dip. It works well with a nice crusty sourdough or a fluffy roti.

Traditionally, it’s a fall or winter Punjabi dish, we would have this as the temperatures cooled down and eggplant came into season. But thanks to modern day supermarkets you can buy eggplant nearly year round and make this tasty dish.

It’s definitely not the easiest of dishes to make. Instead it’s tedious and requires a bit of focus. All of that said, it’s well worth the effort. This dish is just so flavorful and robust in it’s texture. The recipe is a bit deceptive, in that 9 eggplants seems like it would be enough to feed a small army, but keep in mind that they cook down to nothing! Also, there’s no hard and fast rule as to how smooth you have to make your bharta. Personally, I like it slightly chunky, I think it gives it even more texture and chewiness, but you do you.

Bharta

5 from 4 votes
Course: Main CoursesCuisine: PunjabiDifficulty: Medium
Servings

6

servings
Prep time

30

minutes
Cooking time

2

hours 

10

minutes

2

hours 

40

minutes

Ingredients

  • 9 large eggplants

  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil

  • 2 medium-sized onions, pureed

  • 3 tbsp ginger, pureed

  • 1 serrano pepper, pureed (optional)

  • 3 tbsp whole cumin, ground

  • 3 tbsp whole coriander seeds, ground

  • 1 Indian bay leaf

  • 1/4 cup water

  • Salt, to taste

  • Cilantro for garnish

Directions

  • Prepping Eggplant:
  • Set oven to broil.
  • Place eggplants on a nonstick baking tray and broil till skin is crispy on all sides. This will mean turning it over every 10 or so minutes for about 1 hour.
  • Remove eggplant from oven and let cool slightly.
  • Once the eggplant is cool enough to handle, peel and discard skin and large seed pockets.
  • Coarsely puree the remaining eggplant and set aside.
  • Cooking the Bharta:
  • In a large nonstick pan heat oil over medium heat.
  • Once the oil is hot add pureed onions and cook over medium-high heat stirring often till caramelized. Approximately 15-20 minutes.
  • Add ginger and saute till fragrant – approximately 1-2 minutes.
  • Add in serrano pepper and saute till fragrant – approximately 1-2 minutes.
  • Add in ground cumin and saute till fragrant – approximately 1-2 minutes.
  • Add in ground coriander seeds till fragrant – approximately 1-2 minutes.
  • Add in bay leaf, water, and pureed eggplant and cook on medium heat stirring often for 30 minutes. You’re looking for the eggplant to turn a a deep reddish brown.
  • Salt, to taste.
  • Garnish with cilantro and serve.

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Nutrition Facts

6 servings per container


  • Amount Per ServingCalories466
  • % Daily Value *
  • Total Fat 16.2g 25%
    • Saturated Fat 2.8g 14%
  • Sodium 29mg 2%
  • Potassium 2963mg 85%
  • Total Carbohydrate 80.8g 27%
    • Dietary Fiber 45.3g 182%
    • Sugars 39.5g
  • Protein 13.1g 27%

  • Calcium 10%
  • Iron 20%
  • Vitamin D 1%

* The % Daily Value tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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