Another wanga recipe! This is my current favorite food to drool over, but I don’t see myself making it. Officially, it’s because I hate cleaning the stove. Unofficially, it’s because fire is scary. I call it “wanga bharit”. Pronounced “buh-wreath.” I’m probably pronouncing it wrong. Maybe just call it fire eggplant.
- One eggplant. Pick one with a green stem. A brown stem means it’s gone meh. It should be firm. Not soft or not hard like a rock.
- 1-2 cloves of garlic
- A small, sweet onion
- a sprig or two of cilantro
- a hot pepper to your taste
- salt to taste
- no fear of fire
1. Chop the onion, garlic, hot pepper and cilantro as finely as you can.
2. Wash the eggplant.
3. Pluck up your courage.
4. Turn on the stove.
5. Put the eggplant directly on the flame.
6. Let cook for a few minutes.
7. Gather more courage.
8. Shift the eggplant periodically over the flame so that it’s cooked everywhere. My mom uses her hand. Tongs are a reasonable option. You probably need less courage with the tongs.
9. Keep cooking and shifting. Maybe 15 minutes total.
10. Take off the flame when fully cooked and let it cool a bit on a plate.
11. Cut the eggplant open. Run the knife through it a few times. Cut off the stem.
12. If the seeds are black or if there are just too many of them, feel free to scrape them out. If the seeds are white and tender, they’re pretty delicious. Don’t scrape that out.
13. You can also scrape off some or all of the charred skin if you’d like.
14. Pour in a few tablespoons of olive oil.
15. Mash the eggplant. I use my hands.
16. Add in the ingredients you chopped from the first step and the salt.
17. Mix everything well. With your hands or a fork. Whatever.
Brush your teeth if you’re going out after eating this. Remember, you just ate raw onion and garlic.
- You can use cayenne pepper if you don’t have any fresh hot peppers.
- You can cook the eggplant in the microwave. Poke a few holes in it, wrap in a paper towel and microwave for 3-4 minutes each side. You don’t get the flame taste that way which makes it’s a very poor substitute in my opinion.
- You can grill it on a grill instead of the stove.
- You can broil it. I don’t really know how that works.