food

Desi Eggplant Bake

Here's a great recipe for cheesy Bengali-style baingan bhaja.

food

Desi Eggplant Bake

Here's a great recipe for cheesy Bengali-style baingan bhaja.

Ingredients

  • 1 piece large brinjal
  • ¼ tsp turmeric powder
  • A pinch red chilli powder
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • 1½ tsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp mustard oil (for frying)
  • 1 (24-ounce) can be prepared marinara-style pasta sauce of choice
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan divided
  • 1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese or a blend of mozzarella and provolone

Steps

  1. Wash the brinjal and chop off its stalk. Cut the vegetable along the cross-section into discs, 2 cm thick. A large brinjal should yield about 6 slices.
  2. In a mixing bowl, combine the turmeric powder, red chilli powder, salt and sugar.
  3. Add the brinjal slices to the bowl and coat them with spices. Drizzle 1 tbsp mustard oil.
  4. Cover and let them rest for at least 15 minutes. During this time, the salt and sugar will draw out the water from the brinjal slices and soften them up. The moisture generated will also help all the flavours mingle nicely. So, don’t skip this step.
  5. Spoon half of the marinara sauce on the bottom of the prepared baking dish and spread it into an even layer. Lay 4 eggplant slices on top followed by mozzarella and parmesan. Layer on another 4 slices of eggplant and finish with the remaining marinara sauce. Top with the mozzarella and remaining ¼ cup Parmesan. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the cheese, is melted and the lasagna is hot and bubbly. Let rest 5 to 10 minutes, then serve.