Aloo Paratha with Mustard Seed–Scented Eggplant
- 8 ounces Yukon Gold potatoes
- 8 ounces eggplant
- Fresh ginger
- 1 lemon
- 4 tablespoons vegetable oil*
- 1 teaspoon curry powder
- 1 onion
- 1 can diced tomatoes
- 1 1/2 teaspoons mustard seeds
- Fresh mint
- Fresh cilantro
- 2 whole wheat tortillas
- *not included
- **one head of garlic included in one of the meal bags
- Prep time: 40 minutes
- Servings: 2
- Calories: 516
- Fat: 32
- Carbohydrates: 55
- Protein: 9
The first Indian dish many of us non-Indians learn to cook is aloo paratha, the flatbread that incorporates spicy mashed potatoes (aloo). It’s a beautiful dish, but not easy to make. This shortcut version substitutes whole wheat tortillas for homemade dough, so preparing it is as easy as making a quesadilla. We team it with a simple stew of tomato, eggplant, and crunchy mustard seeds.
Put a medium pot of water over high heat and salt it. Scrub and cut the potatoes into chunks; add to the pot and bring to a boil. Adjust the heat so the water bubbles steadily, cover, and cook until fork-tender, 10 to 15 minutes.
Rinse and cut the eggplant crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Peel and mince the ginger; rinse and halve the lemon. Put 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the ginger, sprinkle with salt, and cook, stirring until it’s fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat; stir in the curry. Drain the potatoes and add to the pan with the juice of half a lemon (save the rest for another use) and mash until mostly smooth. Adjust the seasoning. Put into a bowl and wipe the skillet clean.
Put 1 tablespoon oil in the same medium pot over medium-high heat. Add the eggplant, sprinkle with salt, and cook, stirring frequently until it begins to soften and brown, 5 to 10 minutes. Peel, trim and chop the onion and 3 garlic cloves. Lower the heat to medium, add the onions and garlic, and cook, stirring frequently until the onions are soft and translucent, 3 to 5 minutes more. Add half the diced tomatoes (save the rest for another use) and the mustard seeds and bring the mixture to a boil. Lower the heat so it bubbles steadily, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally until thickened, 10 to 15 minutes.
Rinse, dry and strip the mint; chop enough leaves to measure about 1 tablespoon; set aside. Rinse, trim the toughest stems, and chop the cilantro to measure about 2 tablespoons; stir into the potatoes. (Save the rest of the herbs for another use.) Stir the cilantro into the potatoes; reserve the chopped mint. (Save the rest of the herbs for another use.) Divide and spread the filling over one half of each tortilla and fold over to enclose.
Put 2 tablespoons oil in the skillet over medium heat. When it’s hot, add the filled tortillas and cook until bottoms are brown and crisp, about 1 minute. Turn carefully and cook until other sides are brown, another 30 seconds. Transfer to a cutting board and cut them into wedges. Taste the eggplant and adjust the seasoning; garnish with the mint.