If you want to experience a truly authentic taste of Telangana/Andhra cuisine, you have to taste Andhra Vankaya Kobbari karam – translated as Andhra eggplant, coconut masala. It is an authentic delicacy in Telangana/Andhra Pradesh cuisine which are India’s states Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. Telangana and Andhra Pradesh are recently split states from the southern part of India. Both states share a very much same cuisine, with quite a few variations in a few regions. Telangana is the land of spicy food. Yet it is not painfully spicy, it is an awesome smooth spice which wakens your taste buds and makes you feel you this is the one you missed all your life long.
For vegans, vegetarians, this dish is an absolute rejoice. This is such an easy meatless Indian vegetarian dish. Baby eggplants are slit, stuffed with the fresh ground spice mix and carefully sautéed. When I find young, cute and tasty baby eggplant, I never miss them. This dish makes goes well with rice and lentils. In south India, Vankaya kobbari karma is eaten with rice or roti. I made this item recently and friends preferred to gobble them as it is, discarding the stem. They all loved it. It is also a great combination to pulihora (rice dishes). Eating vankaya kurma as a side with South Indian rice dishes is a great way to reduce the temptation to eat more rice. Insane eggplant taste will sidetrack you from rice. Also, a great way to consume vegetables. Not sure if you observed, this dish is made of fresh, all-natural ingredients. No can, no frozen or packaged ingredients.
So proud of my readers. You guys are still here after reading such a lengthy recipe name. The name might be long but the recipe is easy. Eggplants are slitten into 4 pieces. Ground spice is carefully rubbed inside the slit. Make sure eggplant isn’t broken. Carefully sauté them so that they aren’t mushed. Once sautéed, the aroma awakens your nostrils and makes you gobble right away.
- 10 - Eggplants of the same size
- 3 tbsp - healthy oil as coconut
- ½ cup - diced medium red onion
- 4 - green or red chilies
- ⅓th cup - fresh or dried coconut
- Pink Himalayan salt or sea salt
- ½ tsp coriander powder - optional
- ½ tsp - cumin powder
- Pour water into a big bowl.
- Pick eggplants of almost same size. Wash eggplants thoroughly.
- Slit eggplants with X shape all the way. Leave ¼th inch from the bottom. Place them in the water bowl, so that they don't change color.
- Dice onion, chilies. Grind onion, chilies, coconut, cumin, coriander powder, and salt together.
- Place the ground mix in eggplant slit. Be careful not to break them.
- Heat a wide pan. Add coconut oil. Heat to medium-low.
- Arrange eggplants by size.
- Add big size eggplants first. Close lid. Cook for 30 seconds. Now add next big size eggplants. Do till you are don't with all size eggplants.
- Now cook for 3-4 mins or until you see the char.
- Turn eggplants carefully not to mush. Cook for 3-4 minutes. When they are cooked, eggplants should be soft but not mushy. Depending on the size of eggplants, they may be have been cooked by now. If eggplants are big, you have to cook till it is cooked all the way inside. Slowly open one of the eggplants and check if it is cooked all the way.
- When cooked, turn off the stove. Garnish with cilantro.
- Serve by itself or rice or roti.