Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Baigan Ka Bharta: Eggplant Mash: Pressure Cooker Method

Did you notice the white and blue bowl? It’s a new purchase for just 25 pence each-great buy isn’t it? I can’t stop myself when I see blue, white and flowers. What did you do on the long weekend?

Today’s post is Baigan Ka Bharta, a very popular Punjabi north Indian dish. Baingan in English is known as aubergine, eggplant or brinjal and bharta means mash. There are many ways to make begun ka bharta but the most common is to smoke or roast begun on open charcoal fire, peel the burnt skin and mash it with fork. If you have less time in hand do take a look at my Microwave Baigan Ka Bharta.

Looking for baigan (Eggplant) recipes? Check these out:

Even though I love and prefer the burnt method but Mr. Husband doesn’t like that smoked taste and if that was not enough recently his sister told him the incident when she saw a huge worm inside the eggplant. Imagine you roast the brinjal and there is a worm inside, which you will mash and use in your bharta-eww, yuck!  So these days I prepare bharta using pressure cooker or as some call it the boiled method.

Let me tell you, this is a super easy and a quick method. You don’t have to clean the mess on the hob that aubergine leaves when you roast it and the taste is just awesome. Trust me you have to try this method-period! So you need to peel the aubergine, chop it into rings, put in pressure cooker and cook it on high heat till you hear one whistle. Don’t worry if you don’t have pressure cooker, just boil the chopped brinjal in the pan full of water, cook till it gets soft, discard the water and yeah that’s it.

Like authentic baigan ka bharta I too like to use ghee (Indian clarified butter) and lots of garlic, but feel free to use oil and less garlic. I use some whole spices as well and garam massala is a must ingredient in this recipe. Bharta or bhurta is served as side with makke ki roti but this can be served as a dip or spread as well.

We like to spread thick layer of baingan ka bharta on any Indian paratha, roll it like a cigar and bite into. If like London you are having sunny yet cool days then this spicy and garlicy baigan ka bharta is always a good idea. So, on weekend I made the complete meal methi moong daal, simple steamed rice, jowar ki roti and this bharta.

Author: Shweta Agrawal
Recipe type: Side, Dip, Spread
Cuisine: Punjabi, North-Indian

2 large eggplants/baigun
1 medium size onion chopped finely
2 medium size tomato chopped finely
8 cloves garlic chopped roughly
1 teaspoon whole coriander seeds/dhaniya
1 dry red red chilli
1 bay leaf/tej patta
2 tablespoons ghee/oil
1/4 teaspoon cumin/jeera
2 pinch asafoetida/hing
1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder/haldi
1 teaspoon red chilli powder/lal mirch
1/2 teaspoon coriander powder/dhaniya
1/2 teaspoon garam massala (recipe here)
2 green chillies slitted
Salt to taste
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon coriander leaves chopped finely

Wash and peal eggplants. Chop into rings and pressure cook with 1/2 cup of water and 1/2 teaspoon salt on high heat for one whistle. Release the pressure and strain the water.
In mortar and pestle coarsely grind bay leaf, red chilli and whole coriander seeds.
In a kadai/pan heat 1 and 1/2 tablespoons of ghee. When hot, add asafoetida, cumin seeds. Let cumin seeds crackle.
Add the coarsely grinded spices. Turn the flame to low. Cook for 2 miniutes.
Add chopped garlic and onion. Add pinch of salt. Cook till raw smell of garlic fades away and onions turn soft.
Throw in chopped tomatoes, red chilli powder, garam massala, coriander powder and salt. Mix and cook it covered for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes you will see that tomatoes have become soft and mushy.
Add boiled eggplants. With a help of fork mash eggplants till you get spread like consistency.
Add in lemon juice, green chillies and leftover 1/2 teaspoon of ghee. Cover and cook again for 8 minutes.
Serve with chopped coriander leaves.

While buying the baingan for bhartha, go for the ones which are light. A heavy brinjal indicates that there are ripe seeds in it and this may spoil the taste of the bhartha.
Always cook bharta on low heat.
You can use small eggplants or even Chinese (Asian) eggplants for this recipe.
This is a spicy dish; I used three kinds of chilli in this recipe. Please adjust the spice level as per you taste.

Serving suggestion:
Serve as side with parthas, puris, roti –basically any indian bread.
This is a great dip as well. Serve with chips, nachos or crackers.
Spread a thick layer on to your sandwich bread or pita pockets. Enjoy with patties and or salad.


  1. Baigan bharatha in pressure cooker is something new to me.. the bhartha looks delicious. Nice pics too..

    1. You must must try this method Sona:) Thanks :)

  2. Oh, never really tried bharta in pressure cooker! And yes, the new bowl is super cool :)

  3. Pressure cooker Bhartha very new to me . Will try sometime

  4. Loved your pressure cooker method..Yummy.Loved this cute bowl.

  5. looks so yummy yaar...love this pressure cooker method

  6. that bowl looks really cute, love your pink board! This is a dish I never get right... yours looks so good, maybe I am choosing my baingans wrong like u mentioned! :)

    1. Hai na? Me too love the bowl. Oh yes, you need to select the baingans properly. Thanks Rafi :)

  7. looks super yumm...tempting one,nice color!!

  8. I am a die hard fan of baigan bharta and this one is looking stunning. Love the color. Great recipe!!

  9. Did someone say 'Baigan Bharta'? Count me in! :) Shweta, this Bharta looks temptingly delicious! I would love to have it anytime! Nom nom! :)

  10. I was looking for bharta recipe without roasting so I tried this bharta recipe and it turned out so yummy..Thank you!

  11. Do you need to peel the entire skin of baingan.

    1. yes,,, like how you will peel a potato.. same way

  12. The ground spice smelled awesome,I've put the brinjal and pressure cooker it. A little water remained,so I cooked it a little more without cover. Awesome recipe.


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