Sunday, 26 November 2006

afghani eggplant with yoghurt

Bouranee Baunjan

In my quest to cook my way around the world like many fellow food bloggers (such as Margarita and S.C.), I have discovered some very interesting recipes.

I recently stumbled across some Afghani recipes and one vegetarian dish that immediately caught my eye was the Bouranee Baunjan or Eggplant with Yoghurt.
The eggplant is browned before being cooked in a spicy tomato and onion sauce and then served with garlicky yoghurt. It was simply delicious served with flat bread and I made a few lamb koftas to accompany it.

Even Jonas, who detests eggplant, said it was more than palatable.

Bouranee Baunjan
Anna’s version of a commonly distributed internet recipe. Serves 4 as entrée or 2 as main.
1 large eggplant
2 medium onions; sliced
2 large ripe tomatoes; peeled and sliced
¼ teaspoon chilli flakes
¼ cup vegetable stock
2 cups plain yoghurt
4 garlic cloves, crushed
Chopped fresh coriander and mint, for garnish
Salt, to taste
Olive oil, for frying
1. Keeping the peel, cut the eggplant into 1cm thick (1/2-inch) slices and then sprinkle liberally with salt. Leave for 30 minutes, then pat dry with paper towels. This process allows the salt to draw out some moisture from the eggplant.
2. Heat oil in a deep frying pan and then fry eggplant until lightly golden on both sides (they do not need to be cooked through, you are just adding colour and a bit of flavour). You will need to do this in batches and add more oil as needed. Remove cooked eggplant slices to plate.
3. Oil will leech from the eggplants, so return this to the pan to reheat and then add the onion. Fry until soft.
4. Add 3 garlic cloves, tomato slices and chilli cook until tomatoes break down and a sauce is formed. Add a little stock and seasoning as needed. Remove from pot.
5. Place a layer of eggplant back into the pan. Top with sauce. Repeat using remaining ingredients. Pour in any remaining oil from eggplant and onion and add the remaining stock. Cover and simmer gently for 10-15 minutes until eggplant is tender.
6. Combine yoghurt, salt and 1 garlic clove. Mix well then spread over the base of the serving dish.
7. Top with eggplant slices, lifting eggplant carefully to keep intact. Top with remaining sauce and onions. Sprinkle with some fresh mint and coriander for colour.
8. Serve immediately with Afghani flat bread. Also good with lamb meatballs.
Note: The traditional recipe calls for chakah, which is plain yoghurt that has been drained overnight. This makes it a little thicker and drier.

Lamb Koftas with Cumin & Mint
Anna’s very own recipe. Makes 10 small meatballs.
200g lamb mince
1 tablespoon mint, finely chopped
1 teaspoon coriander, finely chopped
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon chilli flakes
1 garlic clove, crushed
Dash of lemon juice
1. Mash all the ingredients together with a fork until well mixed.
2. Using your hands, form small balls. Flatten slightly.
3. Heat oil in a saucepan, fry until browned all over (1-2 minutes each side).
4. Serve hot, garnished with coriander and mint.

This episode of Weekend Herb Blogging is in Australia and hosted by one of my favourite bloggers, Haalo from Cook (almost) Anything At Least Once. Be sure to check out her blog as well as her recap of this weekend's cooking frenzy.



  1. Both of these sound very wonderful. I wish ground lamb was more affordable here, it's very expensive so I rarely buy it. I can tell I'd love this meatball recipe. I'm not a big red meat eater, but I think lamb is my favorite red meat.

  2. lamb is my favourite too. it's very affordable in australia since we farm a lot of sheep.

    jonas' sister is engaged to an aussie too (they live in sweden) and his family have a sheep station far away in the outback. eating fresh lamb there is an experience i will never forget. sooooo good!

  3. anna, all your food looks so delicious.

    i have made both these things before but with different recipes, obviously. i shall have to try your lamb kofta with your ingredients. it looks like it's perfect. kofta is a regular thing chez moi but mostly using ground beef or veal.

    ground lamb is not commonly sold here in regular supermarkets but i can get it and WILL try this! at least for this one. as kalyn mentions it is an expensive meat in north america. especially when i have to buy kosher meat! the price will be worth the results, i'm sure.

  4. Oh my! This sounds sooo middle eastern and sooo good, made me almost homesick.

  5. burekaboy- wow, i can imagine kosher lamb will be hard to come by and therefore expensive! but meat from a butcher is always tastier than a supermarket. is my eggplant dish considered kosher? there's no meat/dairy cross over there.

    burcu - i ate some really similar patlıcan dishes in turkey, so i can understand it brings back memories for you.

  6. Anna, I love your Bouranee Baunjan... The lamb koftas hit my tastebud, too! :)

  7. I love the sound of the eggplant dish! (And how I wish I would learn to like lamb! The koftas look delicious.)


  8. 100% kosher, as far as i can see! as long as you don't eat it when you eat the kofta (can't mix meat & dairy at same meal). as far as the (kosher) lamb goes, i can get at 1 or 2 places for 20X the price!! can you believe a 3 kilo bone-in shoulder piece costs me about 75 dollars CDN!! more bone than meat ... crazy.

    anna, next time try pomegranate molasses when you make the kofta. it adds an amazing taste to the meat.

  9. oh I love lamb kofta. It is one of my favs. Unfortunately my hubby is not to have much lamb.

  10. Well!! I'm starving after looking at those mouthwatering pictures! :):)

  11. OMG! This is so similar to the Hyderabadi (India) Baingan ki Boorani...even the name!! I usually serve it with Hyderabadi Kabooli (a garlicky rice-split chickpea pilaff) but it must be really good with the kofta kababs.

  12. Anna, your Lamb Kofta recipe both sounds and looks fantastic. Just reading the ingredients, i'm so sure to love this.


  13. Anna,
    Thanks for the recipe! I've been looking for one. I visited Afghanistan a few years ago and loved this dish! I'm making it tonight! yeah!

  14. Anna, came to your blog bia Pinterest- i love your recipe for borani- this is my family's piece de resistance- it is something that is made every Eid in our family home. lovely to see a different version of the recipe- and to have discovered your blog. x s


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