Biryani for non vegetarians only is it.........who says make this and see all the vegetarians will fall in love with this rice. Since we are passing through the phase of being a vegetarian for short while, I thought of using my chicken biryani recipe. All I did was gave a twist with eggplant. Infact the baingan lovers will go mad over this dish as its filled with the aroma of the spices, coconut and ofcourse the flavour of the basmati rice with mint and coriander leaves.
I made this recently for a gathlering, when they opened they said you have planted something as only the stems were visible and out of their curiosity they pulled out to see the surprise it was many of their favorites baingan. Believe me it just got over and was not sufficient for the hungry tummies.
Tell me how you like this recipe.
Serves : 6 – 8 light eaters
Ingredients:Basmati rice – 2 cups
Salt to your taste
8 pieces of medium sized young eggplants, slit into 4 with stems*
6 tbsp oil or ghee
Water - 4 cups
Juice of a lime
* infact drop them into salted water
Coconut, fresh - ½ cup
Coriander leaves – ¾ cup
Mint leaves – ¼ cup
8 green chilies – Please keep your spice level
Ginger paste – 1 tbsp
Garlic paste – 2 tbsp
Curd – 1 tbsp
Salt about 1 tsp
Turmeric - a generous pinch
Onion sliced – big 1 no
3 green cardamom pods, shelled
2” piece cinnamon
4 star anise
3 bay leaf
Method:Wash and soak the rice in water for about half an hour.
In a blender or food processor put in all the ingredients for the masala and make a smooth paste and keep it thick and not water.
With the help of a knife make four slits in the eggplants, keeping the stems intact. Stuff them with the freshly prepared paste and keep aside for about 15 minutes. The balance masala let it remain as we will use it in the next step.
Use a big pot that has a tight fitting lid as we will have to cook it in dum. Add oil over a medium flame. Lower the heat and add in the whole spices one after the other and throw in the onion and let this get sauted. Now add the ginger and garlic paste and fry till the raw smell goes away. Now add the left over masala and fry.
Drain the rice and put it into the pot. Give it a good stir for 2 minutes, add the water (always the water proportion is 1 cup rice :2 cup water) and bring to a boil. Add the lime juice and the salt (keep in mind we have added salt in the masala so see and add here for the rice level),
Cover and cook on the lowest heat for about 10 minutes, until the rice is half cooked and the water is little left more and not fully absorbed. Now place the stuffed eggplants all over the rice and add some ghee at this point of time if you like (I have not added).
Put an empty Tawa direct on the flame and then keep your rice pot to cookon the tawa. This is how I cook on dum. The heat from the tawa to the rice will cook the rice in low flame. See in my first picture.
Cover and cook for 15 to 20 minutes, until the rice and the eggplants are cooked. Please note let it get cooked in low heat.
Serve with the simple raita made with curd, onion, tomato & green chillies J