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Roasted Eggplant and Tomatoes

Also known as baigan chokah, this dish is often eaten with simple whole-grain flatbreads, such as chapatis, or rice. It can also be served as part of a meal in small, individual bowls. This recipe is courtesy of Madhur Jaffrey.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Yield: Makes 1 1/4 cups
roasted eggplant and tomatoes

Photography: Jake Stangel

Source: Martha Stewart Living, March 2017

Ingredients

  • 1 pound slim, tender eggplants (about 4 Japanese or 2 Italian)
  • 2 medium plum tomatoes (8 ounces)
  • 1 to 2 fresh hot green chiles, such as bird's-eye, Indian long, or serrano, finely chopped
  • 4 1/2 teaspoons peeled and minced shallot
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh mint
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons fresh lime juice
  • 3 teaspoons mustard oil or fruity, good-quality extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions

  1. Preheat broiler, with rack in top third of oven. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. Use a fork to prick eggplants all over; prick tomatoes in a few places. Place both vegetables on prepared sheet and broil, turning occasionally, until charred all over and very soft, 15 to 20 minutes for tomatoes and slim eggplants, up to 40 minutes for larger eggplants. Remove as done and place in a sieve set over a bowl; let cool.

  2. When cool enough to handle, peel eggplants and tomatoes. Remove and chop pulp finely; place in a bowl. Add chiles, shallot, mint, cilantro, lime juice, and 2 teaspoons mustard oil; season with salt and pepper. Mix and taste for balance of seasonings, adjusting as necessary. Refrigerate until ready to serve, or up to 2 days.

  3. Put chokah in a serving bowl; drizzle remaining 1 teaspoon mustard oil over top. Serve cold or room temperature.

Cook's Notes

In India, the eggplant is roasted over a simple wood fire, or sometimes buried in very hot embers. The tomatoes are simply held over a wood fire with chimta (tongs) until the skin blackens. Both vegetables are peeled, mashed together, and seasoned; that is all there is to it. The mustard oil used here gives the true flavor of eastern India, but is not essential.

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