Friday, September 18, 2009

Yennegayi/Yengai (Stuffed eggplant)

I believe that for anybody to fall in love with a cuisine, he/she needs to actually taste the authentic version first. If we try the cultured/modified version, we might not appreciate it much. Take my example.., I tried pasta at a Chinese resturant (Bad choice, isn't it!!) & decided not to eat any more pasta. Thanks to my friend, she took me to an Italian resturant to make me feel how the authentic pasta would taste.Same was the case of my hubby, he being born & brought up eating Udupi Cuisine didnot appreciate North Karnataka Cuisine, until I made him eat jolada rotti + yengai in a small food joint in D.D. Urs Road, Mysore. I need not specifically mention that he became a regular customer to them :)
Though I have spent a part of my childhood days in North Karnataka, I didnot have the recipe of this. I got this recipe from my friend who has literally grown up eating them. Thanks a lot for the recipe.

Ingredients: (Serves: 4-5)
For stuffing (Spice powder)
Coriander seeds/dhania: 1 tbsp
Ground nuts: 2 tbsp
Urad dal: 1 tsp
Roasted channa da(gram)l/hurigadale: 1 tbsp
Cinnamon: 1 inch stick
Clove: 3 nos
Cumin seeds/jeera: 1 tsp
Black sesame: 1 tsp
Niger seeds/hucchellu: 1 tsp (Thanks a lot for correcting me Jayasri)
Dry coconut: 1-2 tbsp (grated)
Red chilli: 12-15 (I like it hot & spicy)
Red chilli powder: 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves: 3 strings
Asafetida: 2 big pinches
Salt: According to taste

For the gravy:
Small eggplant: 14-18
Tamarind: 1 big grape sized
Powdered Jaggery: 1 tsp(optional but recommended)
Onion: 1 big
Garlic: 2 pods (optional)
Oil: 3-5 tbsp
Water: 1.5-2 cups
Mustard Seeds: 1 tsp
Cumin seeds: 1 tsp
Curry leaves: 2 strings
Coriander leaves: 2 tbsp (finely chopped, for garnishing)


For the masala/spice powder

Dry roast all the ingredients mentioned (except coconut, roasted channa dal, asafetida & salt). Allow the spices to cool.

After dry roasting the peanuts, peel the skin & keep them aside. Mix roasted channa dal, coconut, asafetida, salt to the other spices & prepare a fine powder. Finally add peanuts & run the mixie for 5secs (idea is to powder the peanuts to a coarse powder).

For yennegayi
  1. Wash the eggplant & pat dry. Make a slit of the eggplant as shown below.
  2. Fill a tbsp or less of the spice powder to each of the eggplant. Keep the stuffed eggplant aside.Heat oil in a broad pan (ensure to take a very broad one, as it has to fit all the eggplants). Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds. When they splutter, add curry leaves, garlic & onion. Saute until onion turns golden brown.
  3. Add tamarind extract, remaining spice powder, stuffed eggplants & stir well. Oil should coat on the eggplants. Add water, salt (check the taste & then add, because we have already added salt to the spice powder), jaggery & mix well.
  4. Cook the eggplants on a low heat sitrring occasionally. Add few tbsps of water if required. Cook until the gravy becomes thick & eggplants soft. (It takes around 10-15 minutes).
  5. Turn off the heat, garnish with coriander leaves & serve it with hot rotis.


  1. Yennegayi literally means kayi(vegetable) cooked in yenne(oil). The more oil you put, the tastier the dish would be.
  2. The dish would tast equally good without garlic & onion too. My mom doesn't add them & I love that version too.
  3. Try to take equal sized eggplants as all of them get cooked evenly.
  4. Nigella seeds are a must to get an authentic taste to the dish.


  1. My mouth is watering!! I love ennegai. One more meal for next week is fixed :)

  2. I love yennagai! Looks delightful, Sush! What's the name of the joint on DD Urs rd? I'll be sure to visit next time. Sounds like a place I should not miss :)

  3. MOuthwatering stuffed eggplants!!delicious.

  4. @Smitha & Priya,
    Thanks a lot.

    DD Urs road nalli ondu masidi ide gottalwa? Adarinda munde hogbeku towards JLB road. You reach a point where there is the junction between DD Urs Road & NS Road, The very small food joint is right there on the left hand side of the junction. It is run by a North Karnataka family & I remember they open only in the evenings. (Not sure about other time). They prepare the jowar roti in front of you & serve. It is a street shop & I dont remember if they even have a hotel name!!
    When you go around in the DD Urs road, keep an eye. I am sure you can find them out & enjoy the north karnataka jowar roti & yennegayi :)

  5. That powder seems very Nice & spicy...will surely try it for eggplant next time....

  6. yennegai with jolada rottti is my favorite combo dear...

  7. very right about the authentic taste..i have eaten the best akki rotis at one particular restaurant in mysore..never after that..
    Your subji looks so yumm..

  8. Yum! I love eggplants in any form. this is delicious.

  9. Thanks for the info, Sush!! Have a good weekend hon.

  10. Looks lovely, love brinjal. Can have it anytime of the day.

  11. Jolada rotti and yennegai is a great combo.... yours look very tempting...

  12. Loved the looks mouth watering!

  13. Hi! I guess I am first time here. You have got a nice blog with interesting collection of recipes.
    The eggplant looks absolutely inviting with that freshly ground masala.
    Would love, if you could visit my blog and leave me a note.

  14. hi loved d photos n presentation!

    i try diff version , but will try yours looks authantic recipe jus like kamath yathri nivas of b,lore.

    nimma blog kooda chenngide anta nanna anisike!


  15. @All,
    Thanks a lot.

    Thanks a lot for your warm comments. Idannu try madi hegittu antha heli aitha?

  16. hi sushma, I love trying everybody's pudi nimmadu try maaduthene, ondu vishaya thappu thilkolla bedi, kalonji/nigella seeds andre adu onion seeds anthare, aadre huchellu berethara iruthe alva, nange eega confuse aagthide, naanu nan blog nalli huchellu bagge bardidde, eggplant stuffing use maadidde mathe huchellu pudi kuda maadidene, huchellu photo kuda post maadidene, mathe nigella seeds kuda ittukondidene, illi huchellu sigalla antha, ee sala bengaloru bandaaga kondukondu bande, ee post na bekaadre reject maadi ivathu nimma blogninda, ondu yoghurt dish try maadide thumba chennagithu, thanx for the recipe, soon i will post it linking it to your blog,

  17. @Jayasri,
    Thanks a lot for your honest comments. Let me check with my friend again. I'll update you soon on the results.

  18. @Jayasri,
    You are very true, hucchellu means niger seeds & not nigella seeds. Kalonji & hucchellu are different. Thanks a lot for correcting & making the dish more authentic.

  19. hmmmmm this is my fav with akki roti.very well im drooling.



Thanks for visiting 'Savi-Ruchi'. I would try my best to update the blog with new & interesting recipes.
Hope you had nice time in my blog & feel free to share your comments.
Visit Again!!

Featured Post

Noodles and Vegetables with Honey Ginger Sauce

Am I the only one who crave for noodles when sick with cold and sore throat? I love this noodles with honey-ginger sauce and it is perfe...