Afghan Borani Banjan – Layered Eggplant Dish

borani banjan ©SpiceRoots

A simple but delicious eggplant recipe layered with tomatoes, yoghurt, herbs and spices.

Source: www.spiceroots.com

 

Ingredients

For Borani:
2 medium eggplants (Tamar Valley Hydroponics)
2 teaspoons oil for cooking (more for brushing the eggplants if you are baking them)
2 large tomatoes, diced (Tasmanian Natural Garlic & Tomatoes)
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
½ teaspoon coriander powder
¼ teaspoon turmeric
Oil for frying (you can also bake the eggplants)
1 teaspoon chopped garlic (Old School Farm)
½ teaspoon dried mint
Fresh mint for garnish (Laos Fresh Farm, Thirlstane, Steve’s Vegies, Seven Springs)

For the Yoghurt sauce:
1 cup yoghurt (Elgaar Farm)
1 teaspoon finely grated garlic
2 tablespoons dried mint

 

Method

Make the Yoghurt sauce:
Mix all ingredients and refrigerate.

 

Make the Borani Banjan:
Cut the eggplants into ½ inch slices.
Sprinkle slices liberally with salt and leave them to ooze the water and then pat them dry. I usually skip this step if my eggplants are fresh from the farm.
To bake – Brush slices with some olive oil and arrange on cookie sheets. Broil until lightly browned. About 3 minutes each side.
Alternately – heat oil in a skillet and pan fry the eggplants a few at a time.
In either of the methods do not cook the eggplants completely. They should be slightly firm in the middle.
Once the eggplants are done, remove them from the pan and begin to cook the tomatoes in the same pan.
Put the 2 teaspoons oil in the pan and add in garlic, saute and then add tomatoes.
Cook until they become mushy then add in the turmeric, coriander and cayenne. Stir to combine and cook until the spices are well mixed in. Remove from the pan and keep aside.
Now arrange half of the eggplants (in the same pan) to cover the surface of the pan.
Arrange the cooked tomatoes on top. Repeat with another layer of eggplant and the remaining tomatoes.
Add 1/4 cup water and cover with a tight lid.
Cook on low medium heat for about 20 minutes and check for doneness. You are looking for a soft texture but not a mush.

How to Serve: Spread some of the yoghurt sauce onto the bottom of a serving dish.
Top with the eggplant stacks, lifting each stack carefully. Top with the remainder of the yoghurt.
Sprinkle the dried mint on top. Garnish with fresh mint leaves. Serve immediately, with naan.