Vangibath - Brinjal Rice

4 cups Basmati rice
12 - 15 medium sized purple Brinjals
3 - 4 Green Chilies
Few Curry Leaves
2 tsp Groundnuts/ Cashew nuts
4 tsp Vangibath Masala (Homemade or Store bought)
Lemon juice

Vangibath masala:
1 tsp Urad dal
1 tsp Channa dal
2 tsp Dhania – Coriander seeds
1 tsp Sesame seeds
½ tsp Jeera
4 Red Chilies
½ tsp Gasa-gaga
1” Cinnamon stick (dalchinichakka)
2- 3 Cloves
1” Ginger
Few Curry leaves
2 tsp grated Coconut

Take 2 tsp of oil in a skillet. Add urad dal and channa dal and fry till the dals turn to golden yellow. Add red chilies, hing, ginger, coriander seeds, gasa-gasa, cinnamon stick, cloves and a few curry leaves. Then add sesame seeds, and grated coconut. Fry all the above till nice aroma fills the room. Let cool and dry grind all the items to a smooth powder.

This masala has good shelf life, save in an air tight container or Ziploc bag to retain its freshness.

For the Rice:
Cook rice in a rice cooker with 1:2 ratio of water. Add 1” butter stick or 2 tsp oil to the rice to be fluffy and not sticky.

Cut brinjals length wise. Place them in cold water to retain the color.

Take 4 tsp of oil in a skillet and add 1 tsp of mustard seeds and curry leaves. When they splutter add ground nuts or cashew nuts (according to taste) and fry for a few minutes, till the nuts change their color.

Now add cut brinjal to the skillet and fry them till they are nicely roasted. Oil can be added as required. Salt, turmeric can be added now. Once the brinjals are nicely cooked, add 4 tsp of the vangibath masala powder and then add the previously cooked rice, salt and gently mix without messing up the shape of the brinjals. Check for seasoning and salt and add accordingly. Remove from flame and add lemon juice and garnish with coriander.

Papad or vadiyams are a good side dish with Vangibath.

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