Stuffed eggplant rice is the amazing dish which can be loved by the non -eggplant lovers.When I made this rice I was truly surprised by its aroma and taste. It was very tempting and jovial meal with raita. I think this rice goes well with any kind of raita. The real fact is you will not miss the absence of key ingredients like onion and garlic which are always common in any pulav or pilaf or biryanis. Only you need the best variety of fresh eggplants. I have notice some times eggplants are bit bitter in taste. So What I do is? I slit the eggplants and soak them into salted water for few minutes. Doing this you will not have bitter taste in the eggplants
- Small eggplants - 10
- Basmati rice - 2&1/2 cups
- Water - 4 cups
- Salt - 2 &1/2 tsp
- Lemon juice - 2 tsp
INGREDIENTS FOR STUFFING
- Cilantro - 1/2 cup, chopped
- Mint leaves or pudina - 1/2 cup
- Green chillies - 3
- Ginger - 2 tsp, chopped
- Salt to taste
To Roast and Grind the Ingredients for Stuffing
- Cumin seeds - 1 &1/2 tsp
- Cloves - 8
- Black pepper - 6 to 8
- Green cardamom - 6 pods
- Cinnamon stick - 2 inch piece
INGREDIENTS FOR SEASONING
- Oil - 4 tbsp
- Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
- Cloves - 5
- Cinnamon - 2 inch piece broken into pieces
- Star Anise - 2 whole, broken into pieces
- Bay leaf - 3
- Asafoetida - 1/2 tsp
- Dry roast the spices on medium flame with continuous stir,without burning them.
- Combine roasted ingredients and fresh ingredients into blender and make a smooth paste by adding little amount of water,
- Now using a knife make four slits in the eggplants with stems intact and stuff the prepared paste and some paste will be leftover. Keep it aside for later use.
- In wide pot heat oil on medium flame. Add all the whole spices(spices mentioned in the above seasoning category).
- Fry the spices for 1 minute and then add remaining reserved paste. Sauté till the raw smell goes off.
- Now drain water from the rice and add it into the pot. Mix well and add water.
- Bring it to boil and then put lemon juice and salt. Cover and cook on low flame for about 10 to 12 minutes or until the rice are half cooked and water is almost but not fully absorbed.
- Once the rice is half cooked, place the stuffed eggplants by slowly digging in the rice, make sure not to mash the rice.
- Cover and cook for another 15 minutes on the same flame until the rice and eggplants are fully cooked.
- Stuffed eggplant rice is ready to serve with your favorite raita or with spiced yogurt.