Here’s a delicious side dish recipe for Biriyani – the very famous “Ennai Kathirikai” aka brinjal curry. Biriyani is incomplete without a spicy and thick brinjal gravy that oozes out oil. This is a much requested recipe by my friends and family and this brinjal curry has become an important of all our biriyani meals. Every part of India has a different method of preparing brinjal and this one here is a traditional South Indian recipe that goes very well with both biriyani and roti! Try out this method and share your results with us.
- Brinjal – ½ kg
- Gingelly oil – ½ cup + 2 tablepsoons
- Mustard seeds – 2 teaspoons
- Cumin seeds – 3 teaspoons
- Dried red chillies – 3 large
- Curry leaves – 2 sprigs
- Ginger garlic paste – 1 tablespoon
- Asafoetida (hing) – a generous pinch
- Turmeric powder – 1 teaspoon
- Red chilli powder – 1 teaspoon
- Tamarind – lemon-sized
- Coriander leaves – ½ cup, chopped
- Required salt
To make a masala paste :
- Coriander seeds – ⅓ cup
- Groundnuts (peanuts) – ½ cup
- Grated coconut or dry coconut powder – ½ cup
- White Sesame seeds – ¼ cup
- White poppy seeds – 2 tablespoons
- Fenugreek seeds (methi seeds) – ¼ teaspoon
- To begin making the ennai kathirikai, dry roast all the ingredients mentioned under ‘masala paste’ until fragrant and golden brown. Let it cool and blend to a fine paste by adding ½ cup of water. Keep this aside.
- Wash and dry the brinjal. Cut off the stems and slice them according to preference.
- In a large kadai or saucepan, heat ½ cup gingelly oil and lightly fry the brinjal over medium heat. Fry for 2-3 minutes until soft and the peel shrinks. The brinjal should be half-cooked so don’t fry it for a long time as it might turn dark quickly. Remove the brinjal from the pan and transfer to a plate.
- In the same oil, temper mustard seeds, cumin seeds, dried red chillies & curry leaves until they splutter. Add ginger garlic paste and the ground masala paste and stir well. Add ½ cup water and let it boil.
- Meanwhile soak a lemon sized tamarind in ¾ cup water for 5-1o minutes and extra the water.
- As the gravy cooks, add turmeric, red chilli powder and required salt. Drop the fried brinjal into the gravy and add in the tamarind water. Close the kadai with a lid and let it cook for 5 minutes.
- Now add in 2 tablespoons of gingelly oil to the gravy and let the brinjal cook completely for 10 minutes and until the gravy oozes out oil and gravy changes color from white to a lovely golden orange curry.
- Turn off the stove and garnish with chopped coriander leaves. Serve hot with biriyani and raita! Enjoy!