Bengali Begun Bhaja or Baingan Bhaja is a dish prepared out of thick slices of the eggplant marinated in spices and coated with rice flour and deep-fried. It goes perfectly with rice and dal and even phulka.
Here are some more Baingan Recipes, that you can prepare for your everyday meals – Baingan Methi, Aloo Baingan, Easy Punjabi Baingan Bharta, Kalonji Baingan, Masaledar Bharwa Baingan, and Kashmiri Dahi Baingan.
About This Recipe
Bhaja in Bengali is thick slices of vegetables coated with a gram flour batter and deep-fried until crisp. It is a fav Indian (Bengali) tea time snack and can be made using a variety of vegetables like potatoes, cauliflower, onion, eggplant, etc.
Here, we are making this Bhaja recipe using Baingan or Eggplants, which is popularly called as Bengali Begun Bhaja.
It is a dish prepared out of thick slices of the eggplant marinated in spices like turmeric and chilli powder, coated with rice flour and shallow fried.
Its crispy texture makes it a perfect evening snack or it can even be served with Roti or Dal Chawal for dinner.
Use the large purple variety of eggplant with fewer seeds to make this dish.
Use of mustard oil to fry Baingan ka Bhaja gives it an authentic taste, however, you can fry it in vegetable oil too.
There is another version of this bhaja in Bengali cuisine and it’s called Neem Pata Begun Bhaja. It’s like a stir fry of eggplant with tender Neem leaves added to it.
When the slices of vegetables are cut into long pieces instead of roundels, it’s called lomba bhaja in Bengali.
This dish is,
- Easy to make
- Perfect for your everyday meals
- Great for your evening snacks
Baingan/Eggplants – This Begun Bhaja is prepared with a large variety of purple baingans, as they have few seeds inside it. It is sliced into thick pieces and marinated in the masala before stir-frying.
Rice Flour – Rice Flour gives a perfect crispy texture on the top.
Mustard Oil – For the authentic traditional Bengali flavor, use only mustard oil to make this dish. But if you do not prefer the strong flavor of mustard oil, then you can use vegetable oil too.
Spices – To add spice and taste to the Baingan Slices more, we will use spices such as turmeric powder, red chili powder, and salt.
You can even add Amchur Powder/ Dry Mango Powder to add some tanginess in the rice flour mixture.
Sugar – A little sugar is added to add that slight hint of sweetness that complements the spice really well.
Step by Step Recipe
Wash the eggplant and wipe it dry with a kitchen towel. Cut into 2 cm thick slices.
Mix turmeric powder, red chilli powder, rice flour, sugar and salt in a plate.
Apply this mixture all over the eggplant slices.
Heat mustard oil for shallow frying in a pan.
Shallow fry in hot oil on high heat until golden brown from both the sides.
Frequently Asked Questions
Traditionally, it is prepared using the big variety of purple eggplants, which are sliced in rounds.
But if you are using the long thin variety of brinjal, slice it from between, take out little seeds and then mix it with spiced rice flour mixture. Pan fry on the pan and serve.
I will not suggest you make it ahead of time. Baingan is one of those vegetables that doesn’t taste great if kept for longer. Also, these Begun Bhaja will become soggy and oily.
As they are super easy to make, prepare it fresh, and serve hot.
Begun Bhaja and Khichuri is a perfect combination and is loved by all Bengalis.
You can also serve it with Dal Rice and even with Luchi. Not only with Bengali Meals, but you can also serve it with your everyday North Indian meals too. They even taste great with Phulka or Tawa Paratha.
They are also a perfect snack to serve along with your evening tea and enjoy it whenever the hunger strikes.
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Begun Bhaja Recipe
- 1 Eggplant / Baingan (Large one)
- ½ teaspoon Turmeric Powder
- 1 teaspoon Red Chilli Powder
- 1 teaspoon Sugar
- Salt to taste
- ¼ cup Rice Flour
- Mustard Oil for frying
- Wash the eggplant and wipe it dry with a kitchen towel.
- Cut into 1 cm thick slices.
- Mix turmeric powder, red chilli powder, sugar, salt and rice powder in a plate.
- Apply this mixture all over the eggplant slices.
- Heat mustard oil in a pan.
- Shallow fry in hot oil on high heat until golden brown from both the sides.
- Serve immediately.