Smoked Eggplant & Yogurt Dip.
Raita is a curd-based dip. Usually, raita is very simple with either some cumin or some mint and cucumber, etc. But this is a very flavorful raita with smoked eggplant, garlic and ginger.
Green chili paste, and sometimes mustard paste, are also used to enrich flavour. A popular variety of raita of Northern India is boondi raitha—tiny balls of fried gram flour (chickpea flour), which may taste salty or tīkhā (spicy). The mixture is generally served chilled.
· 1 large eggplant
· 2 garlic cloves
· 1 cm ginger piece
· 1-2 green chili
· 1 small onion
· 1 cup set curd
· 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
· 1-2 tablespoons lime juice
· Salt to taste
· 1 teaspoon cooking Oil
· a small bunch of fresh coriander, chopped
How I make it.
1. First we need to smoke the eggplant, over a gas stove. Wash the eggplant, make a few holes with a fork, smear with the cooking oil and put it straight on a medium flame of your gas stove. Keep turning it frequently until it becomes soft inside, it usually takes around 10 minutes. Let it cool.
2. Peel the smoked skin of the eggplant and remove the stalks.
3. In a food processor put the garlic cloves, ginger, onion and eggplant flesh and blend it for a moment until it mixes well or until you get a desired consistency.
4. Beat the yogurt lightly and fold it into the eggplant flesh. Add fresh lime juice and salt to taste.
5. In a small pan, dry roast the cumin seeds and once it cools down either grind them in a spice grinder or in a pestle and mortar.
6. Just before serving, garnish with fresh coriander and powdered roasted cumin.
*Instead of cumin seeds you can garnish it with Chat masala.