Instant Pot Achari Aloo Baingan (Potato and Eggplant in Pickling Spices)

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Achari aloo baingan is tangy, spicy, and very flavorful. Potatoes and baby eggplants are coated in a blend of aromatic spices and cooked until perfectly tender.

instant pot achari aloo baingan by myheartbeets.com

What is Achari Aloo Baingan?

If you like Indian food, particularly north Indian food, then you’re in for a treat. Achari aloo baingan is a Punjabi dish that you make by cooking baby eggplants and potatoes in a blend of Indian spices typically used to make pickles (achar). It’s flavorful, spicy, and tangy.

This dish is often eaten with Indian bread, but you can also eat it over rice with some dahi on the side (my preference). I love pairing this dry dish with a saucy dish like my Chicken Curry or my Punjabi Chole.

Achari aloo baingan is very easy to make, but I do have to warn you, the list of spices is a bit long – but it’s also necessary to get that perfect chatpata (tangy) achari flavor. Once you gather the spices together – the rest of the dish is smooth sailing.

instant pot achari aloo baingan by myheartbeets.com

What Kind of Eggplant Should I Use?

I love using baby eggplants in this dish because they hold up together well, and they also have a bit of a “meaty” texture. That said, I’ve tried this using a large eggplant (cut into pieces), and that also turns out well – but the texture is different – the eggplant pieces melt into the curry. It’s delicious, so if you can’t find baby eggplants, a large eggplant will do. It’ll just look more like this recipe for my Aloo Baingan.

Another thing about baby eggplants – they can really vary in size. I buy mine from my local Indian grocery store (or Whole Foods if I find them in stock). Choose eggplants around the size that you see in my picture – if you find the really teeny tiny ones at the Indian grocery store, then use two or three for 1 baby eggplant. If you’re a little “off” on guessing sizes, the dish will still turn out fine. It’s a forgiving recipe. 🙂

instant pot achari aloo baingan by myheartbeets.com

Looking for More Achari Recipes?

I love achar, and so naturally, I love achari dishes. If you’re like me and can’t get enough achari, then try my Achari Chicken Kebabs or my Achari Chicken Curry. For those who are new to Indian cuisine: you do not want to serve achari dishes together as the flavor is similar. If you’re looking for dishes that’ll complement this dish, then try the two recipes I recommended earlier in the blog post (Chicken Curry or Chole).

If possible, make this a day in advance as it tastes even better the next day!

Instant Pot Achari Aloo Baingan (Potato and Eggplant in Pickling Spices)

instant pot achari aloo baingan by myheartbeets.com

Instant Pot Achari Aloo Baingan (Potato and Eggplant in Pickling Spices)

This Punjabi dish is made by cooking baby eggplants and potatoes in a blend of Indian spices typically used to make pickles (achar). It’s flavorful, spicy and tangy. This dish is often eaten with Indian bread, but you can also eat it over rice with some dahi on the side (my preference). If possible, make this a day in advance as it tastes even better the next day!
4.75 from 4 reviews
Pin Recipe Print Recipe
Servings 4 -5
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine Indian

Ingredients
 

  • 8 small eggplants approx. 1 pound
  • 2 tablespoons mustard oil or oil of choice
  • 1 onion diced
  • 3 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons minced ginger

Spices

  • 2 medium potatoes approx. 1 pound, chopped into 1-inch pieces
  • ½ cup water
  • Cilantro garnish

Instructions
 

  • Using a knife, make two deep slits forming an X shape at the bottom of the eggplants, making sure to keep the stem intact. Set aside.
  • Press the sauté button then add the oil and allow it a minute to heat up. Once the oil is hot, add the onions to the pot. Stir-fry for 6-7 minutes, or until the onions begin to brown.
  • Add the garlic, ginger, spices and stir, then add the potatoes and mix well.
  • Add the eggplants and the water and mix well.
  • Secure lid, close the pressure valve and cook for 4 minutes at high pressure.
  • Open the valve to quick release any remaining pressure.
  • Garnish with cilantro and serve.

Notes

  • Roasted cumin powder is highly aromatic and has a more intense flavor than regular (unroasted) cumin. Do not substitute this with regular cumin as you won’t get the right favor.
  • To make roasted cumin powder: heat a skillet over low heat and dry roast cumin seeds (I usually do 1 cup) for 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally until the color of the cumin changes to a dark brown. Turn off the heat and allow the cumin seeds to cool down. Place the cumin into a spice grinder and blend until smooth. Store in an airtight jar and use within 6-8 months for the most flavor.
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About Ashley

Hi, I’m Ashley. Thanks for being here! I truly believe that food brings us closer together. Gather around a table with good food and good people, and you’ll have the ingredients you need to create some happy memories. My hope is that you find recipes here that you can’t wait to share with family and friends.

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Comments

  1. Mitzi says

    Recipe does not mention grinding stuffing eggplants. May be I missed. Assume they are stuffed or is the masala added at the end.

  2. Maneesha says

    5 stars
    What a GREAT RECIPE! I’ve made eggplant and potato in the instant pot, but the spice mixture of this recipe is just TOO GOOD! It was my first time cooking with fenugreek and fennel powders and calonji – what a great spice combo!

  3. Tabu says

    4 stars
    I tried this recipe.Although I didnt have all the ingredients. I had 1 big eggplant (not the small kind) and didnt have a few ingredients on hand, like amchur and ajwain. I did put in a little extra water because I was afraid it might burn in my instant pot. I am still getting used to mine. It turned out good and it had the achari flavor! Thanks for sharing the recipe Ashley!!

  4. Diana says

    What can be used in place of Carom and Nigella seeds? I want to try this dish but can’t easily find those ingredients close to my home.

  5. Laila says

    Hi Ashley, I see the achari ingredients listed but no directions on how and when to use them in the recipe. Am I missing something?

    • My Heart Beets says

      Thanks Hina! The recipe calls for 2 medium potatoes (aloo) 🙂 I list the ingredients in the order that the recipe calls for them so the potatoes are listed toward the bottom – perhaps you missed it?

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