Bharelu Shaak or stuffed vegetables are also known as Ravaiya in Gujarati. There are numerous vegetables we love to make Ravaiya with, Karela, Ringan/Baby Aubergines, Parval, Goonda, Bhinda…the practice of stuffing the vegetables seems to have evolved to make the otherwise unappetizing vegetable look enticing and to add quantity to the shaak. Also, the period when our cuisines evolved were very frugal times. Vegetables weren’t available to many, large joint families and limited means, required the home makers to be wise and creative and make the most of what was available in the season. If you notice most of the vegetables that we stuff also happen to be summer vegetables, these vegetables shrink a lot once cooked hence, it was essential to add either potatoes or stuff them to increase the quality of Shaak. Shaak is the one common term we use to address our cooked and uncooked vegetables, be it a stir fry, gravy, thing curry, dry preparation or stuffed preparation, any vegetable on the plate is called shaak. It is the most important component and yet the most disliked element on the thali. Such stuffed shaak are also called Motu-Shaak meaning not big but festive in this context. Such veggies were made on Sundays or holidays when the family would enjoy a leisurely lunch together!!
The Ravaiya no Masalo have 3-4 popular versions. One is just the spices, next is spices and besan, then we have peanuts and coconut mixed with spices, we also prepare a stuffing with finely chopped onions and spices, we also used gathiya to prepare the stuffing!! Every winter my mother-in-law and I make it a point to make a Ringan na Ravaiya nu shaak like this as many times we can!! MIL also calls it semi-undiyu or the scaled down version of Undhiyu. It is a fairly easy dish to cook but requires a little extra time on the preparation. We cook it first in the pressure cooker just so that it requires less oil as such shaak call for lot of oil. Partially cooking it in the pressure cooker and then finishing it by cooking it is a kadhai is what we usually do unless I fret a lot about oil and we end up cooking it with just few tablespoons of oil in pressure cooker. The taste however is massively different so best is to enjoy the oilwala version and put all the worries aside ❤
Bharelu ShaakPrint Recipe
- 8 baby aubergines
- 6 baby potatoes or 3 medium potatoes
- 2 onions, medium sized
- 1 cup tuver na dana/fresh pigeon peas
- 2 cups methi leaves/fenugreek greens
- 1/2 cup fresh coconut, grated
- 1/2 cup coriander, chopped
- 6-7 green chillies
- 3 inch piece of ginger
- 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
- 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1+1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon cumin & coriander powder
- 1/2 teaspoon asafetida
- salt to taste
- 1/3 cup groundnut oil
Prepare the vegetables by
Washing and soaking the tuver lilva.
Washing, peeling and soaking the potatoes and onions.
Wash and remove the crowns of the baby aubergines. Slit them criss-cross vertically. Similarly give vertical slits to potatoes and onions. Soak.
Wash the fenugreek leaves and coriander and soak in water.
Wash and roughly chop the chilies and ginger.
Now we proceed to prepare the stuffing mixture.
In a processer or mixer grinder pulse a couple of times the chilies, ginger and grated coconut.
Transfer the processed coconut mix to a large bowl.
Similarly pulse the tuver lilva taking care not to grind it to paste. Remove the coarsely pulse lilva to the same bowl.
Now pulse the fenugreek and coriander leaves to roughly mince them.
Transfer to the same bowl.
Using your hands give the ground ingredients a good mix.
Add the salt, sugar, lemon juice, coriander-cumin powder, sesame seeds, turmeric powder and mix well.
Stuff this mixture in the baby aubergines, potatoes and onions.
You will be left with a good amount of stuffing. Don't worry we will use it for layering.
To cook, place pressure cooker on a medium flame.
Add 1/4 cup, once the oil heats up add asafetida and gently place the stuffed vegetables . Begin with placing potatoes, then spread some stuffing mix. now make a layer of aubergine and follow it up with a layer stuffing mix.
Finally place the onions and spread the balance stuffing masala.
Add 1/2 cup of water and close the lead.
Pressure cook for one whistle.
Turn off the flame after that and let the pressure ease on its own.
Now place a heavy bottom pan/kadhai on medium to low heat. Add the remaining oil.
As the oil heats up gently transfer the shaak from pressure cooker to the kadhai.
Spread it well, cover and cook until the potatoes are cooked. Insert knife in a cooked potato and if it is tender enough turn off the flame.
Transfer to a serving bowl.
Serve hot with Rotis.