May 22, 2013

Punjabi Baingan Bharta (Punjabi Style Eggplant)

Punjabi Baingan Bharta is just one of several versions of eggplant bharta there are in Indian cooking. The word ‘Bharta’ (pronounced BHURR-taah) refers to dishes in which the ingredients are roughly mashed either before or after preparation. Bhartas are largely North Indian in origin and made from all sorts of vegetables. While it may not win any beauty contests, I created this version of Baingan Bharta as one that is fast and simple to prepare and has tons of flavor.

There is no need to mash the veggies as the eggplant will be falling-apart-tender when it’s done cooking. And the addition of garbanzo beans makes it a hearty main dish. Unsweetened apricot spread is a little secret ingredient that I found adds a lot of depth of flavor with a hint of sweetness to many Indian dishes!


  • 1 large eggplant, cubed (I usually peel mine, too, as the skin can be bitter and hard to digest)
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 TBS fenugreek leaves
  • 1 tsp tamarind paste
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 TBS coconut aminos (or any low-sodium soy sauce)
  • 3 TBS tomato paste
  • ¼ cup dried currants
  • 1 TBS apricot spread
  • 1 15 oz can salt-free garbanzo beans
  • fresh chopped cilantro for garnish
  1. Place eggplant, onion, fenugreek leaves and garam masala in a deep sauté pan with the water.
  2. Cover and simmer until the onions are tender.
  3. Add remaining ingredients and stir well to combine. Simmer about 30 minutes more.
  4. Serve as is or with some brown basmati rice. Garnish with cilantro.

Serves 2-3 as a main dish. Enjoy!
Healthy trails,

6 responses to “Punjabi Baingan Bharta (Punjabi Style Eggplant)”

  1. I've been looking for what else to do with eggplant! Thank you!! This is one of my favorites.

  2. Helyn says:

    Great! You're so welcome, Robert!!

  3. I came across your blog while looking for some Indian food recipes and liked a lot. How amazing! I will keep an eye out for all your recipes 🙂

  4. Helyn says:

    Thanks! You can subscribe to receive email alerts when a new recipe is posted. 🙂

  5. Michelle Blake says:

    Delicious! The kitchen smelled wonderful and I loved this dish. I also added a can of diced low-sodium tomatoes. I will make this again. Thank you!

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