So, this is one dish you can try if you are trying out Eggplants and you like medium to spicy food. This will be an instant hit to those who already love eggplants in any form. The method for Ennai Kathrikai various from place to place in South India, there is gravy version (kuzhambu), a drier gravy version, a poriyal (stir fry) version, each has a very distinct taste and feel, but include the same main ingredients. Today I am presenting the drier version of the dish, this extremely flavorful recipe is perfect as a side for rice/ biryani. It is surprising how complex flavor belies the simplicity and easy of making of this dish.
Indian Eggplant/ aubergine - 12 , small rounds ones that you can get in Indian stores.
Red Onion - 1 cup chopped
Whole Black Pepper - 1 tsp
Cumin Seeds- 1 tsp
Coriander Powder - 1 tbsp
Red Chili powder - 1 tsp
Salt - 1 tsp
Sesame seed Oil/ Gingelly Oil - 2 tbsp
Wash and cut crosswise the small aubergines bottom up leaving it still attached to the stem. Cut the tall length of the stem to closer to the head of the eggplant. Place these in a bowl full of water. Make a medium smooth paste of the the rest of the ingredients except the oil. Now fill each aubergine slit with the gravy you just made and keep aside.
In a wide saute pan heat the oil, once the oil is hot carefully place each eggplant next to each other. If you have any remaining gravy pour over the eggplants. Reduce the heat to simmer, cover and cook for 10 minutes. Turn the eggplants over and then cover, and cook for another 10 minutes until both the sides are soft and the aubergines are fully cooked. As we are using little oil, make sure that you scrape the gravy off when you turn the eggplants over. Once you notice the oil leaving the sides of the gravy you can turn off the heat and transfer to a serving bowl.