We just love how diversified Bengali cuisine is. From the simplest of the dals and sabzis to the exotic mutton kosha and illish bhapa, you would find it all in a Bengali meal. This often makes it tough for people to pick their favourite from the lot, especially when you have countless recipes to try. Bengali cuisine is a melting pot of various food cultures, with each having its set of specialities. This is why, you would find even a simple macher jhol having different recipes in different households. Interesting? Here, we will talk about another such dish that is simple, comforting and can be made and relished in more than one way. It’s the quintessential begun bhaja.
About Begun Bhaja
Begun in Bengali stands for baingan (aubergine) and bhaja stands for fry. It is simply sliced baingan, deep fried in oil. While we majorly associate fried food with snacks and appetisers, begun bhaja has a much bigger role to play in a Bengali meal. You can pair it with some other dishes to make a complete meal. And the fact that you can customise the recipe as per your palate, makes begun bhaja popular among all, except the ones allergic to it. Let’s look into some of the most popular versions of the recipe.
Also Read: Watch: How To Make Baingan Ka Bharta – Here’s A Foolproof Step-By-Step Recipe
How To Make Bengali-Style Begun Bhaja – 3 Ways To Make Begun Bhaja:
To start with, we will go for the simplest one in the lot. All you need to do is, slice the baingan, mix it with haldi powder, salt and some red chilli powder (optional) and deep fry it in mustard oil.
If you like that additional crunch in your meal, sprinkle some atta (or rice flour) and kalonji while coating the sliced baingan with salt and haldi. Rest, it’s the same – deep fry in mustard oil until golden and crispy.
If you want to enjoy begun bhaja as an appetiser, prepare beguni out of it. Beguni is a baingan fritter, made by coating sliced baingan in besan batter. It is then deep fried in mustard oil and enjoyed hot. Click here for the recipe.
In the next section, we will look into various ways to add begun bhaja to your meal. Read on.
Also Read: Khichuri-Begun Bhaja: Bengal’s Wholesome Lunch Combination That Screams Monsoon
5 Ways To Add Begun Bhaja To Your Meal:
1. With rice and ghee:
The classic begun bhaja is best enjoyed with hot rice, ghee, salt and green chilli. Mix the rice, begun bhaja, ghee and salt together and enjoy with hot green chilli.
2. With rice and dal:
Instead of achar or aloo chips, you can also pair your regular dal chawal with the classic begun bhaja. It adds a layer of flavour to your meal.
3. With roti, luchi or paratha:
Begun bhaja and luchi (or roti/paratha) make for a quintessential Bengali breakfast. You either have the classic begun bhaja or pair it with the atta begun bhaja for added crunch. Don’t forget to take a green chilli by the side.
Also Read: Cholar Dal With Luchi: Bengal’s Traditional Breakfast Combo You Must Try
4. With khichudi:
You must have already had it during Durga puja. Flavours of khichudi, infused with crunchy begun bhaja, spell comfort. You can enjoy all three types of begun bhaja with the humble khichudi.
5. With muri (puffed rice):
Pair with muri (puffed rice) and you can enjoy beguni as a wholesome snack. Mix muri/murmura with mustard oil and have beguni alongside.
What are you waiting for? Make some begun bhaja at home and enjoy! Let us know which of the above versions of begun bhaja you enjoyed the most.