411. Chidambaram Gosthu (eggplant sabji)
My usual routine before I start blogging is to read recipes from fellow bloggers that I follow. Some have a story to tell, some go straight to the recipe. I browse through the ingredients. Usually I get to learn about a new ingredient, or a twist to an existing recipe or favourite foods make me drool. Desserts, cookies, breads, cakes, muffins make me sit up more straight. I note down the recipes I want to try and the list just seems to get longer. So I am slowly making an effort to go through the list and actually try them out. Not all recipes turn out well, some I need to make according to the likes and taste of the family. My usual comments are delicious, worth trying, must try, make me drool, photos look tempting, yummy etc etc. Yesterday hubby dear read a comment I put on one of the recipes and he bluntly asked how do I know it tastes delicious. I answered that I went through the recipe and the photo shoots make it look delicious. So he just replied that why don’t you try it out and then write your comment. True, but I guess also comments makes one feel good, appreciated. Anyway, whichever bookmarked recipe I try, I will go back and put a comment.
So today’s main ingredient in the fridge were brinjals (eggplants). I remembered having bookmarked a Chidambaram Gosthu from Sadhanakitchen. Chidambaram is a town in Tamil Nadu famous for the Thillai Nataraja Temple. Gosthu is a gravy. Sadhana mentioned in her blog that this gosthu is the main dish for every marriage in Chidambaram and it is also offered as prasadam in the temple. Thank you Sadhana for sharing a lovely recipe with us.
I cooked the gosthu according to the way my hubby would like it but used all the ingredients mentioned by Sadhana. You can make it the way she has or try my version. Some prepare the gosthu by adding pearl onions. I added a bit of fresh tomato puree, added more coconut, used moong lentils instead of chana and used less chillis. As soon as I started roasting the gosthu masala, the delightful aroma of coconut filled the kitchen.While the gosthu was cooking, I couldn’t resist tasting the gravy and finally adding the seasoning totally transformed the gosthu to a new level, taste wise and on the appealing factor.
CHIDAMBARAM GOSTHU (EGGPLANT SABJI)
original recipe source : Sadhana Kitchen
8 small tender brinjals (approx. 500g)
1 tbsp thick tamarind paste (amli)
¼ tsp turmeric powder (haldi)
8-10 curry leaves
1 tbsp grated gur (jaggery)
2 tbsp oil
1½ tsp salt
½ cup fresh tomato puree
½ cup water
1 tsp oil
4 tbsp grated fresh coconut
1 tsp coriander seeds (whole dhania)
1 tsp urad dal (white split lentils)
1 tsp moong dal ( split green gram lentils) or chana dal ( split chickpea lentils)
½ tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
1 red chilli (original asks for 3)
¼ tsp fenugreek seeds (methi)
½ tsp asafoetida (hing)
1 tsp ghee
½ tsp mustard seeds (rai)
½ tsp moong dal or chana dal
½ tsp urad dal
1 red chilli (optional)
5-6 curry leaves
Preparation of the gosthu masala:
- Heat the oil in a small pan over low heat.
- Add all the ingredients except the hing and coconut.
- Roast the spices and lentils for a few seconds and then add the coconut.
- Keep stirring and roast the coconut till you get a good aroma.
- Add hing and mix well. Leave the masala on the side to cool.
- Grind it in a food processor.
- Remove the stalk and leaves from the brinjals. Cut it into long slices.
- Heat oil in a pan over low heat.
- Add the curry leaves, haldi and the brinjal pieces.
- Stir fry the brinjals till well coated with the oil and haldi.
- Add water, tomato puree, all of the gosthu masala, salt and tamarind paste. Mix well.
- Cover and let the brinjals cook till done.
- Mash the brinjals lightly and add the jaggery.
- Mix well.
- Before serving the gosthu, add the seasoning.
- Heat ghee in a small pan over low heat.
- Add methi, rai, dals, red chilli and the curry leaves.
- As soon as the lentils begin to turn light pink, remove from the heat and pour over the brinjal gosthu.
- Cook on low heat as the lentils in the masala will make the sabji stick to the pan.
- I had to add water to cook the brinjals.
- I used moong dal as hubby dear is allergic to chana.
- I added tomato puree to make a more thick gravy.
- I usually buy a whole packet of amli (tamarind) and make the a thick paste and store in the freezer. Cook the tamarind in enough water till it becomes soft. When it cools down, remove the husks and seeds. Process the whole mixture in a blender to a smooth paste.
- To make fresh tomato puree, wash and cut tomatoes into half. Cook them over low heat, covered till soft. Process in a blender when cool.
- Use brown sugar instead of jaggery if you don’t have any.
|stuffed brinjals or bharelu shaak|
|potato brinjal shaak|