4-6 Small, round, eggplants
1 table spoon Oil
1 tea spoon Mustard seeds
A generous pinch of hing
1/2 of a medium sized Onion, chopped finely
1 sprig curry leaves
Salt as per taste
FOR THE MASALA
3/4 cup Grated coconut
1 table spoon Coriander powder
1" Cinnamon stick
1 table spoon red chilli powder
1 table spoon Peanuts
6-8 garlic pods
1/2 of a medium sized Onion, chopped coarsely
1. Dry roast the peanuts until the peanuts start popping a little
2. Grind the roasted peanuts with coconut, onion, coriander powder, chilli powder, garlic , ginger and salt; Add just enough water to make it a coarse paste; Keep aside.
3. Make two slits on the eggplants, lengthwise- Such that the slits form a "+" sign on each eggplant; Be careful while making the slits, and make sure the eggplant is in 1 piece and not quartered while slitting them; Retain the stalk of the eggplant.
4. Stuff the eggplants with the ground masala and keep aside; Save the remaining masala for making the gravy.
5. Heat oil in a pan; Temper with mustard seeds, hing and curry leaves.
6. Add finely chopped onions and saute for a minute.
7. Slowly drop the stuffed eggplants one by one into the pan; Cook covered on medium heat for 4-5 minutes; Flip the eggplants once in a while, so that they are cooked on all sides;
8. Add some water to the saved masala paste and pour into the pan over the eggplants; Adjust ingredients according to taste
9. Saute regularly and continue to cook covered, until the eggplants are done and the gravy reaches the desired consistency.
10. Remove from stove and serve hot with rice, rotis, dosas etc.