Khatta Begun

Sweet and Sour Eggplant

2 pounds eggplant
1/2 cup seedless tamarind
1/2 tablespoon ground turmeric
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 tablespoon ground red chilli
2 teaspoons finely chopped onion
2 teaspoons ground coriander
2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon ground garlic
3/4 cup cooking oil
1/4 tablespoon ground ginger
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon panchforan*
2 bay leafs

Soak tamarind in 1 cup of water. Rub through a sieve and save the thick liquid drained from it. Slice eggplant 1/2 inch thick, wash and drain water . Mix ground spices and salt to make a paste. Mix eggplant with half of the paste. Fry eggplant slices until light brown in a covered pan.

Choose a pan in which 2 or 3 layers of eggplants can be arranged afterwards. Keep it in the refrigerator for few hours and then serve. It can be made early.

Heat rest of the oil in that pan. Add panchforan, bayleaf, and rest of the spices except sugar and tamarind. Add 1/2 cup of water and stir until oil separates. Add 2 cups of water, tamarind and sugar and arrange eggplant slices. Cover and cook for about one hour. Remove from heat when gravy is thick and is separated.

 * Panchforan = five spices (cumin, aniseed, fenugreek seed, mustard seed, black cumin)

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