This easy to make stuffed vegetable prep is a great addition to the feast menu. Preparation is short and simple, and they can be made well ahead. This prep is sure to please with those who like it hot.
Eggplant Brahmastra is aptly named for its chili heat factor. In Srimad Bhagavatam, Srila Prabhupada describes the brahmastra as being similar to a modern nuclear weapon that acts on combustibility and creates an intolerable heat.
This recipe controls the heat factor in an interesting way. All the hot spices (chilis, pepper and ginger) and folded into cream cheese, which soothes the tongue. With each bite, you get a wonderful combination of hot and cool.
Use full-sized purple eggplant that are fat and round rather than long and narrow, so that your Brahmastra discs will be large and uniform. When adding spices to the cream cheese, err on the side of excess. I generally add about three times the amount of chilis I think I should add, because the cream cheese moderates the heat so nicely.
4 large purple eggplant
2 8 oz. pkgs. cream cheese
Hot dry red chilis
Fresh ground black pepper (medium coarse)
8" knob fresh ginger, minced fine
Ghee or olive oil
Wash and dry the eggplants, then cut the stem cap off each one. Without peeling, slice the whole eggplant into rounds about one-half inch thick. Place in a large bowl and gently toss with ghee or olive oil, or brush oil onto each piece, both sides. You'll want just enough oil to darken the fruit, but don't overdo it.
Lay the oiled eggplant on a baking sheet and bake at 425 degrees F for about half an hour, flipping them once midway through. When both sides are dark golden and crispy, take them out and place on a cooling rack.
Meanwhile, mix together the cream cheese stuffing and let it sit at room temperature. When the eggplant discs are cool enough to work with, stuff each one with a thick dollop of cream cheese mixture. Make the 'sandwich' neat, so the cream cheese isn't spilling out the edges too much.
Each Brahmastra should have 2 to 3 tablespoons of filling.
Once filled, you can cover and refrigerate until needed. Place them back on a baking sheet and heat at 350 degrees F for 5 to 8 minutes before serving, so they're nice and warm. Offer and to Sri Krsna with loving devotion.
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