Before few years, I had prepared this dip with Naan chips (baking naan breads in an oven till they turn crisp) for my school Christmas party and was liked by all :) Today, I prepared this with some healthy crisps to serve with.
This is Snehanshu's favorite eggplant preparation. I could see a smile on his face when I started preparing this today morning. And, how could he not stand besides me and help me or rather wait to eat it! :)
A nice, firm, large eggplant. Normally I would prick it with a fork, apply some oil and roast on open flame. But today, I did something different. I made small incisions with a sharp knife and inserted a garlic cloves in it. Love the fragrance of roasted garlic and this method would infuse garlic flavor in the eggplant too.
Snehanshu helping me while I click pictures :)
We used 6-7 cloves of garlic and inserted it at various points.
I use an aluminum foil or these stove cut outs before roasting the eggplant. This way not only cleaning can be easy but also the delicious juice and from roasting eggplant can be collected to not waste any flavors.
Prick the eggplant with a fork (old habits die hard, maybe this was not required after the incisions for garlic!). Apply a tsp. of oil over it.
I have this eggplant roasting mesh to roast eggplant and flip it occasionally for easy and even roasting.
Roast all over on slow flame. You not only want to the outside to char, but also cook it from inside.
When the entire eggplant is roasted remove in a container and cover it to trap the flavors while still hot and steaming. Cooked eggplant appears crisp and charred from outside and hollow from inside. See how the aluminum foil collected all the flavorful juice. it was way less today though!
While making this soft eggplant preparation, normally the charred skin is removed and discarded and the soft inside is mashed. But I like to mash the entire eggplant and use the delicious charred skin for flavor and texture.
Remove the stiff top and mash the roasted eggplant with a potato masher.
The Garlic is so well cooked and soft, gets mashed easily.
In another pan, heat a tsp of oil and saute finely chopped onions and green chillies.
Add a chopped tomato and salt and cook till tomato gets soft. Mash it well and add the mashed eggplant. Mix well and cook for 4-5 minutes. Add salt if needed.
Squeeze fresh lime and serve with flat bread or rice or with crisps and crackers as an appetizer.
You could also add in a spoonful of yogurt, just how Snehanshu likes it!