Eggplant Rasavangi with Quinoa Pongal
Quite an unusual combination, but it turned out to be super tasty and easy so here it is.
Eggplant-6(small size Indian eggplant)
Toor dal- 1/2 cup
Ginger-1/2 ” piece
Turmeric powder- 1/8 tsp
Salt to taste
Tamarind pump dissolved in water- 2 cups(1/4 tsp paste in water)
Oil- 3 tbsp
Mustard seeds- 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves- few sprigs
Asafoetida- 1 pinch
Coconut- 1 cup
Lemon juice- 1 tsp
Cilantro leaves- 2 tbsp
Slice the eggplant into cubes. Heat one tbsp of oil in a pan and mustard seeds and asafoetida, when the seeds splutter add curry leaves, red chilies and green chilies. Saute the chilies and add eggplants. Add salt and stir fry the eggplants well. Add turmeric powder, tamarind water and cover and let it simmer for 10 minutes till eggplant is half way cooked.
Cook the toor dal and mash it really well with water if needed. Once the eggplants are half done, add the mashed dal, half of the grated coconut(fresh) and let it simmer for another 5-7 minutes.
Heat the remaining oil in a pan and add the rest of the coconut(1/2 cup), when the coconut starts to turn golden brown in color, pour it into the eggplant-dal pot and let it simmer for another 2-3 minutes. Switch off. Add just 1 tsp of lemon juice, garnish with cilantro leaves and serve hot with rice,papad and any subzi. This will be like sambar in taste but not exactly sambar
There is no red chili powder or sambar powder in this recipe so if you like it spicy you need to add more red or green chilies. I usually check for taste when I add the tamarind water and adjust the spice to tanginess ratio. As we also add dal and almost a cup of coconut you have to balance out the taste, besides the chilies I use are quite spicy so I used only 2 green chilies(birds eye chilies).
I used to make the idli/dosa batter with white rice and Bise Bela bhath/mixed rices with white rice, then as I was expecting R I started using brown rice(Gestational Diabetes scare though I did not have it!!) in idlis and dosas, adais, BBB and khichdis. The main issue in this was that N had to like the taste of these ingredients too, right? But now he likes all of these and now we started using zucchini for raithas instead of cucumbers. So naturally when I saw this post at Priya’s on Quinoa Pongal I just had to try it out. Instead of the usual pongal chutney sambar or pongal kothsu, I made the eggplant rasavangi and I really have to say that N loved this combo! He even said quinoa tastes the same like mashed rice pongal and suggested to use quinoa for masala pongal instead of brown rice This was really filling dinner as quinoa is gluten free and full of protein.
Quinoa- 1 cup
Moong dal-1/4 cup
Ghee- 2 tbsp
Cumin seeds- 1 tsp
Cracked black pepper-1/4 tsp (or less depends on you taste)
Salt to taste
Turmeric powder- 1/4 tsp
Asafoetida- 1/4 tsp
Curry leaves- few
Chopped ginger- 1/2 tsp
Cashew nuts- few
Quinoa can be bitter sometimes so I washed it once and soaked it in water for 20 minutes. Then I added moong dal and soaked it for another 10 minutes. I make pongal directly in a pressure pan cooker as it ends up as a one pot dish.
Heat ghee in the cooker and add cumin seeds, when they sizzle, add curry leaves, asafoetida, ginger and fry well, add cashew nuts. Drain the water from quinoa-dal mixture and add them to the pan. Add 3 cups of water(exact), salt, turmeric powder, pepper powder and mix well. Close the cooker and let it cook on medium flame for 2-3 whistles. Let it pressure cool down before you open the cooker.
Serve the pongal with your favorite side dish. The 3 cups of water is really enough to cook the dal and quinoa- this pongal will be mushy and cannot be shaped like normal rice pongal but it is tasty and healthy! If you like make the pongal without any pepper and make the rasavangi spicy, it will match well too.
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