Baigan Choka: Delicious Roasted Eggplant Breakfast Dish (Great with Sada Roti)

Baigan choka is a delicious Trini breakfast side dish made with fire roasted eggplant (baigan), garlic, oil and seasonings and is served with sada roti. It is likely a derivative of baingan ka chokha.

The dish comes from East Indian cuisine where “baigan” translates to eggplant and “choka” is a traditional Indian cooking technique where veggies are roasted over an open flame, peeled and mixed with hot oil and aromatic flavorings like onion and garlic.

Vegan Trini Baigan Choka Recipe: Roasted Eggplant with Sauteed Seasonings text on a photo of garlic being pushed into an eggplant and finished eggplant choka in a white bowl
Delicious roasted eggplant recipe: baigan choka - great vegan breakfast side text on a photo of a bowl of baigan choka

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Ingredients for baigan choka

For this recipe, you will need: eggplant (baigan), garlic, vegetable oil, onion, pepper (like pimento or scotch bonnet), and salt.

Feel free to tweek this recipe by adding fresh Caribbean flavors like chadon beni or green seasoning. To make the dish similar to baingan ka chokha, try adding tomatoes, chilis, ginger, mustard oil, coriander leaves and hing.

Use the Shop to find all the ingredients you need to make great Caribbean cuisine.

How to make baigan choka

Prep the ingredients

Peel the garlic and cut into thirds lengthways. Wash the eggplant thoroughly and cut multiple slits into it. Twist the knife in each slit to open it slightly. By the way, the eggplants I’m using here are from my very own garden!

eggplant for baigan choka

Push the garlic into the slits you just made. Brush the eggplant with a little oil (optional). Peel and dice onions, pepper, and any optional ingredients.

add garlic to slits in eggplant

Roast the eggplant

Place the eggplant on an open flame – either in a chulha, BBQ pit, coal pot, or on the stovetop. Leave to roast for 5 minutes before turning over and allowing the opposite side to roast.

roasting eggplant for baigan choka

Continue turning and roasting, ensuring every part of the baigan is exposed to the flames. You should see charring of the skin and steam bubbles coming out of the slits. When the eggplant becomes very soft and flatter, it is ready to remove – it can take about 15 to 20 minutes to roast. Remove the eggplant and set aside to cool.

Sauté the aromatics

Place a small pot on medium heat and pour in a little oil. Add chopped onions and sauté until translucent. Next, add pepper and other optional ingredients like Caribbean green seasoning and fresh herbs.

Remove the skin

Once the eggplant has cooled enough to handle, cut open and scoop out the roasted flesh and garlic pieces. You’ll want to remove all the charred skin (although if you miss a couple small pieces, that’s fine).

remove roasted eggplant for baigan choka

Mash and add the aromatics

Place the flesh in a small bowl. Add the salt, sautéed onions, pepper and optional ingredients. Mix and mash everything until there are no large eggplant chunks. Serve immediately with sada roti and other chokas like tomato choka and aloo choka.

baigan choka in a white bowl

Tips for making baigan choka

Those steam bubbles that form when roasting the eggplant can drip onto the stovetop. For easy cleanup, it’s a great idea to line the base of the stove with foil. The foil will catch any drippings and you just have to lift up and discard to clean up. Easy breezy!

Another important tip is to use younger or immature eggplants for making this recipe. Younger eggplants are slightly soft to the touch and have small seeds. These seeds become soft after being roasted. The larger seeds of the mature eggplants are tougher and not as soft or as pleasant in the choka.  

Can you batch make baigan choka

Eggplant oxidizes quickly so baigan choka can oxidize and darken after it is cooked. The oil and aromatics reduce this oxidation but it still happens. So, I won’t recommend batch making baigan choka – but you can and it will stay well in the fridge for a day or two.

Baigan choka goes great with curry bodi (yard long beans) and fry bodi too.

Baigan choka recipe

baigan choka on a quarter of a sada roti being held up
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5 from 1 vote

Baigan choka recipe

Baigan choka is a delicious breakfast side dish made with fire roasted eggplant (baigan), garlic and oil. It has a really nice smoky taste.
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time25 minutes
Total Time30 minutes
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: Caribbean, Indian
Keyword: baigan choka
Servings: 3
Author: Ros Singh

Ingredients

  • 2 – 3 eggplants
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 onion (chopped)
  • 1 pepper (chopped)
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • salt to taste

Instructions

  • Peel garlic cloves.
  • Slice the garlic into thirds lengthways.
  • Wash eggplants.
  • Cut multiple slits along each eggplant (twist the knife slightly to expand the slits).
  • Push the sliced garlic into the slits.
  • Brush oil on the eggplants (optional).
  • Place on an open flame to roast.
  • After 5 minutes, turn the eggplants to roast the other sides.
  • After another 5 minutes, turn again.
  • Continue roasting until completely soft and almost flat (20 minutes in total).
  • Remove from heat and set aside.
  • Peel and dice onions and pepper.
  • Place a small pot on medium heat.
  • Add oil.
  • Add onions and sauté until translucent.
  • Add pepper and optional ingredients.
  • Remove from heat and set aside.
  • Cut open the roasted eggplants.
  • Scoop out the roasted flesh and garlic slices. Remove most of the charred skin.
  • Place flesh in a small bowl.
  • Add the salt, sautéed onions, pepper and optional ingredients.
  • Mash until smooth.
  • Serve hot.

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