Cooking without Recipes!

Long Beans and Japanese Eggplant

Following is an “impromptu” dish that I cook up during many of my “Little India Shop and Cook” classes.  Impromptu – because we add to the recipe whatever we find at the market that is good and interesting, or fosters a lot of interest in the students.

I have seen Long Beans in either Chinatown or Indian grocery stores – and so I always pick them up.  The same goes for Japanese eggplants.Long Beans

Long Beans are delicious and can be used pretty much like green beans.  Look for ones that are not too thick as that means that they have matured too long and will not be as sweet as the younger ones.

I usually cut them about 2 inches long and saute them in a pan with mustard seeds and curry leaves.

Vegetable oil, a about a Tsp. of black mustard seeds and 6 to 8 curry leaves

We’ve talked of these ingredients before.  Heat a heavy bottom pan and then add mustard seeds with a few curry leaves if you have them.

The seeds are going to pop – so make sure you cover the pan or they’ll fly all over the place.

As soon as they stop popping add the Japanese eggplant.  If you don’t have Japanese eggplant, use any other kind of eggplant.

Add salt and stir.

Now add the beans and a tablespoon of coriander powder,  1/2 tsp. of cayenne and stir well.

Add minced garlic and ginger if you like (lets say a teaspoon each).

Stir well and cook about 20 minutes.

Sometimes I add diced tomatoes, sometimes a cup of coconut milk – sometimes both.

Stir and taste for seasoning.  The eggplant should be cooked through and the beans should still be somewhat crunchy.  Add a squeeze of lemon or lime juice if you like.

Add cilantro for garnish.

This photo is without the beans – because sometimes when I cook I am not able to take photos.  But you can imagine it – can’t you?

Serve with rice or roti.  Very delicious stuffed in a pita for lunch the next day.

Now get in the kitchen and cook something.



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