Phanna Upkari is a spicy and tangy gravy prepared with very few ingredients.This recipe is a stuffed brinjal recipe and is a regular at my home.I learnt this from my mother.
Here we need to use small variety brinjal preferably but can be prepared with regular brinjals too. A basic masala is prepared and stuffed inside slit brinjals and cooked in tamarind sauce.If you are disinclined to stuff the brinjals or find insufficient time then chop the brinjals and follow the recipe as given below.The curry might look so hot but the onions and the tamarind which is the main ingredient of the curry balances the hot taste of the chillies. Even kids love this curry.Today I have used green variety baby brinjals but you can try with the purple ones too.Here is the recipe
- Brinjal – 8 – 10 nos (small variety)
- Onions – 2 nos medium size
- Red chilli powder – 2 tbsp (I have used kashmiri chilli powder)
- Tamarind paste – lemon size ( soak in water and extract thick paste)
- Salt to taste
- Oil – 2 tbsp
- Curry leaves – 1 sprig
- Select tender and good brinjals. Wash them in water, make four slits on it keeping the stalk intact. Immediately put them in water to avoid discoloration.
- Check whether insects or worms are there inside it and discard if any.
- Chop the onions finely to this add the chilly powder, salt and tamarind paste. Mix well and keep aside.
- Do not make the mixture watery .Check pic for the consistency of the masala
- Retain the leftover tamarind juice to add while making the curry
- Now stuff each brinjal slits with the onion masala and keep aside.
- Keep the excess masala after stuffing aside to use it in the seasoning.
- Heat a thick bottom pan with oil. splutter mustard and curry leaves in it.
- Now arrange the stuffed brinjals one by one in the pan.
- Add the excess masala over the brinjal.
- Add enough water for the brinjal to cook.
- Close lid and cook till the brinjal is soft.Open lid in between cooking and give a stir carefully taking care not to break the brinjals. At this stage check for salt, spiciness and tanginess. If you find the curry spicy then add tamarind juice.
- When oil floats on the sides of the pan and the brinjal is soft, switch off the gas.
|Stuffed with medium sized purple variety brinjal|
Serve with piping hot rice and dalithoi. Goes well with rotis and panpolo too.
- This curry can be prepared with purple variety or with medium sized brinjals too.
- Instead of adding 2 tbsp of chilli powder, can add 1 tsp chilli powder and 1 tsp of sambar powder too .
- If you are using chopped brinjals, then add them immediately after the seasoning and then add the prepared onion masala over it.
- While cooking the brinjal check for salt and spiciness of the curry.As the hotness of the chillies varies you can either increase or decrease the quantity of Tamarind paste according to the spiciness you desire.
- Adding a pinch of jaggery also enhances the taste of the curry.
- Check for water in between cooking.
- Do not burn the curry or allow the brinjals to stick to the pan. Add enough water and cook till the water is evaporated and oil floats on the curry.
- Do not serve when hot. Allow it to cool and let all the spices get incorporated inside the brinjal.
- This curry tastes best the next day of preparation.