Baingan Da Bharta is a classic Punjabi subzi (with other variations), it also happens to be my most favorite Indian dish, and no one makes it as good as my Mom. The irony is, this is the best dish my Mom makes, however she hates Bharta. It is beyond me how someone can possibly hate Bharta? Actually, I know the story behind why she hates Bharta, but I'll not gross you out.
For the longest time I was intimidated to make Bharta. I assumed the Eggplant had to be roasted, not necessary. Although, roasting the eggplant is the ideal way to make this Baingan ka Bharta, my Mom pressure cooks the eggplant. The results are the same! I tried roasting the eggplant once and the inside of the eggplant was not soft; I quickly gave up. Most people make this dish with tons of oil, my version has 2 tablespoons.
After years and years, my Mom finally made this dish in front of me, earlier our timing never matched 🙂 So here goes... my Mom's famous Bhingan ka Bharta and my most favorite Indian dish. It goes best with plain Parathas, however I also eat this dish with Roti, Naan, Rice, and toasted Bread, yes! It is KICK-ASS!!!
NUTRITION: Tomatoes are a great source of Vitamins A and C. Eggplant is a very good source of Fiber and Vitamin B1 (Thiamin).
- Oil - 2 tbsp
- Oil - 2 tbsp
- Eggplant - 1 big (cut off the skin)
- Red Onions - 2 medium (chopped)
- Plum Tomatoes - 6 (chopped) or you can use 4 Regular Tomatoes
- Red Chili Powder - 2.5 teaspoon (use 2 if you can't handle spice)
- McCormick Paprika- 2 teaspoon (this adds color, not spice)
- salt to taste
1. Take an eggplant and cut the skin off as follows:
2. Cut the eggplant in half, place the eggplant in the pressure cooker, fill with water so half the eggplant is submerged.
3. Pressure cook on medium-high heat until you hear the first whistle go off. Should take about 15-20 minutes.
NOTE: Be careful when handling pressure cookers, they can be dangerous!
4. In the meantime, chop the onions and tomatoes.
5. Remember to check on the pressure cooker, turn it off after 1 whistle.
6. Heat a pot on medium, add oil, add onions, and salt.
7. After a few minutes, add 1 teaspoon red chili powder and 1 teaspoon paprika. This will add color to the onions.
8. Cook the onions until caramelized (golden-brown). This will take about 5-10 minutes.
9. Now add tomatoes and salt.
10. Add 1 teaspoon red chili powder and ½ teaspoon paprika.
11. Cover and simmer on low-medium heat (dial #4). Cook this for about 20-30 minutes until the onions and tomatoes have combined. Keep stirring in between to avoid burning.
12. Check on the eggplant! This is what you should have. Check to see if it is fork-tender.
13. Now place the eggplant in a strainer and rinse it.
14. Place the eggplant in a bowl and mash it with a fork. You should not have to apply any pressure.
15. Back to the onion-tomato mixture. After 20-30 minutes, this is what you should have. It is not important to have a paste consistency, just make sure the onions and tomatoes have combined.
16. Add the eggplant, salt, and combine.
17. Cover and cook on low-medium heat for 30 minutes. This will slowly combine all the flavors, in addition, the color will darken. Keep stirring in between.
18. After 30 minutes or so, add ½ teaspoon paprika, and ½ teaspoon red chili powder. The chili powder is optional.
Notice how there is water. The next step is to allow the water to evaporate.
19. DON'T COVER and cook on low (dial #3) cook for another 30 minutes, or until the water has evaporated. This is what you should have. See how little it makes, you can never have enough Bharta!
Very nice recipe. How do I get a taste without cooking it???
Thanks Atul! Next time you guys are here, you HAVE to come over, no deepa/bitu excuses. Also, my mom has made this, you have probably tried it 🙂
This dish is stellar! Easy to make, just a bit time consuming. I made it last night and though I opted to cook it a bit longer (I added a bit more eggplant as I couldn't find one large one), I enjoyed it immensely...and so did my dinner guest and my husband, a very picky eater! I lost count of how many times they said, "This is REALLY good!" Worth every effort, Atul. I recommend you have at it:) Mari
Yes, this dish is time consuming to make. The slow process of sauteing everything is what makes this dish incredibly flavorful. It is worth every effort 🙂
Thanks for your feedback, will let my Mom know.
I made this over the weekend...tasted very close to what I am used to having there....first time it came out so good...
great mb. our mom's a good cook 🙂
The Bird Cage says
Another great recipe! Just finished making it and I cannot wait for it to cool down enough so I can have it!
@Bird Cage - Yup.. this one is awesome.. my mom's best recipe, EVER. It tastes awesome with roti, naan, paratha, and even toasted bread. I love it!
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I came across your blog while looking for some Indian food recipes and liked a lot. How amazing! I will keep an eye out for all your recipes 🙂
Al Maline says
Really felt like it needed Garam Masala at step 18 instead of more paprika. That worked well.
Thanks for the recipe. I was after an easy one and this was it! Beautiful
You're so welcome. This is my favorite Indian dish, so glad you liked it. 🙂
Hi, what do you think about adding garlic? Can it work?
You can definitely add garlic, I wouldn't add more than 2 cloves of garlic though. But absolutely, and you can even finish it off with fresh cilantro (dhaniya) leaves. Let me know how it goes. 🙂
Hi.... can you please tell me how many servings this recipe is for? I need it for 6. I'm really excited to make this with my Mom tomorrow so thank you!!!
For 6 people, I would double the recipe Amy. This is probably good for 3 people. Bharta is never enough, always shrinks. 🙂