Gotsu Pizza …

June 28, 2007 | 30 Comments

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Some of you are wondering, “What on earth is Gotsu?” A Japanese martial art form?

Gotsu, as I discovered recently, is a Tamilian Baingan Bharta - a lazier easier version.

How did it end up on pizza?

I hope you have taken your restroom break and are comfortably seated, ‘cos it’s a long story.

Around mid-May, we saw THIS at the grocery store. I picked up three of them. Blogging makes you do strange things.

I’d heard that Japanese eggplants are tastier and have fewer seeds than other varieties. Plus, they were pretty. In my whole life, I’ve cooked eggplant maybe five or six times, and only as Baba Ghanouj. We made Yennegai once, but while I enjoyed the masala, I didn’t like the chunks of eggplant in there.

I like the taste of eggplant, but not the texture of eggplant pieces. I was about to make Baba Ghanouj again, when I realised how much work it would take to broil, skin and mash three skinny Japanese eggplants instead of one Italian fatso. That’s when I saw Kanchana rave about her mother-in-law’s Gotsu.

Isn’t that an endearing name? Like ‘Gonglu’ and ‘Bhadang’, this one just beseeches to be repeated over and over.

Then, there’s no roasting on an open flame, skinning or other gourmet shourmet bharta-esque manouevres. Plus, no onions. So we made it Kanchana’s way. We added an extra tomato and two garlic cloves, subtracted some tamarind. Threw it all in a pressure cooker and let it cook to a pulp (one whistle).

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Gotsu

Tasted a wee bit, sorta warmed up to it, and forgot about it. It sat in the fridge for a few days, then as we prepared to leave for Colorado, it got shoved in the freezer and out of our minds.

On our return, while scavenging for dinner, we found

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Clockwise: Jar of roasted red peppers, Eggplant Gotsu, Boursin cheese and fresh corn

The gotsu tasted silkenly divine. The spices had mellowed down and the flavours had melded well. Kanchana, can you hear me? It tastes best after three weeks. :D

So we whipped up a batch of our WICKED WHOLE WHEAT PIZZA DOUGH.

Preheated the oven to 500F with a stone in the bottom rack. Rolled out a 12-inch pizza, pricked it all over with a fork, dabbed a tsp. of olive oil on the base, scattered some torn basil leaves from our garden, then 1/4 cup Gotsu (only the thick part), then 1/2 cup chopped roasted red peppers, kernels from one cob of corn, and 1/3 cup (about 2.5 ounces) of little Boursin chunks.

**Putting the herbs between the crust and the sauce prevents them from burning.

**Boursin (we got ours at Costco) is similar in texture to soft goat’s cheese. This one has garlic and herbs. It does not melt down, just gets a few caramelised spots, and is loaded with flavour. Soft goat’s cheese (not feta cheese, which is salty and smells funky) would be a great substitute.

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In the oven

We like to put the pizza on a perforated pizza pan on the stone. We have burnt ourselves too many times putting the pizza directly on the stone with a peel and then trying to slide it off.

** To insure against sogginess, you can pre-bake the pizza crust for 4 minutes before putting the toppings on. We do not find it necessary if the oven is really hot and the sauce does not exceed 3-4 tablespoons.

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Bake for 10-12 minutes or until you see brown freckles appear on the cheese.

Sprinkle lots of freshly cracked black pepper and basil, and serve with some chilled white wine.

VERDICT:
Jai, with his mouth full: “Nice nice”.
Bee: “Is this really eggplant?”

Any leftover semi-dry veggie or paneer dish can be used for this pizza.

Now, Trupti’s fuss-free Baingan Bharta has PIZZA written all over it, dontcha think?

- Bee


Eggplant Pizza is our second entry for this month’s Jihva for Ingredients hosted by the lovely Sangeeta of Ghar ka Khana.

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30 Comments

  1. roopa says:

    yummy! i love this version of the pizza. gotto try this as my daughter also hates baingan but this might work if i cover with more of cheese !

  2. Anita says:

    Very few baingan worshippers inthis house too…I just put eggplant slices, fried in a little olice oil, on my side of the pizza…And I want to try this too – might fool son into thinking it was keema, you think? :lol:

    if i liked it, he will like it too. i think the smoked bhartaey thing may pass off as kheema. – b.

  3. madhuli says:

    Hi J&B nice variation to our usual pizza.Just one question, it might sound stupid to you but is there any special reason for using that stone????

    well, the stone is not necessary if you have a perforated pan – but some folks swear by it. the stone is put while the oven preheats and this means that when you place the pizza on the stone it cooks more evenly and doesnt get brittle yet is crisp. –Jai

  4. sra says:

    Aargh! is what I said when I saw the title – but the picture blew my breath away!

  5. Srivalli says:

    wow wow…there is no end to your creativity jai & Bee..you guys rock…what a splendid usage of a forgotten Gotsu..great…the pictures look just too great…Pizza houses in India have come with tandoori sauces for the topping, I guess you guys can patent this for south Indian sauces….hehe hehe…

    srivalli
    http://www.cooking4allseasons.blogspot.com

  6. Suganya says:

    A what?!! But you pulled it thru’. Necessity is the mother of all inventions :)

  7. Priya says:

    I just can’t get myself to eat eggplant cos of the texture too. And masquerading it in a pizza is totally what I might like ! (need to show this to my roomie :) ) I give weird makeovers to left-over curries too that make my roomies go…”What!!..Why??..Niceee!!” :) ) this one could definitely be one of those dishes.

  8. Meeta says:

    You guys are so clever and come up with the coolest recipe ideas. I really love eggplants and I think this one is right up my alley. I often make tarts with the eggplants but a pizza this way will be a great change.

    Once again I loved reading your post!

  9. Usha says:

    Hi!
    That’s a very innovative pizza! good entry for the event!!

  10. Raaga says:

    Wowowow… I just had eggplant pizza a few days ago :-) Gotsu on pizza sounds terrific… like the paneer makhani pizza or veg chettinad pizza that you get here :-)

  11. indosungod says:

    love the fact that you made eggplant Pizza! this from someone who is not an eggplant love. Imagine the delight in our household where everybody is loves eggplants (love is a strong word but atleast I like to think they all are, because eggplants crops up on the dinner table a little too often)

  12. pelicano says:

    Gotsu, gotsu, gotsu…yes, it is fun to say! If this post was the first I’d ever read from the two of you, I’d think you were totally cracked! And I’d be back again to visit for sure… :-)

    I wonder if this would be good with pasta (Barilla PLUS, of course…or homemade :-D ). Gosh, has anyone tried a sambarizza?

    sambarizza would be great, so would saagizza, dalmakhnizza etc etc …may need to thicken these. the art i guess would be in figuring out which toppings would go best with these bases. for e.g. i think black olives would have been great with the gotsizza. pel – i’ve made some interesting combos with sambar :-) but we can take that on separately ‘cos i dont want to be voted off the island here (b doesnt care too much for sambar as you may have figured !)

    gotsu will go well with pasta for sure.

    –jai

    no, no, no. pasta won’t camouflage the eggplant enough. did you say sambarizza? blech!! – b.

  13. pelicano says:

    Forgot to mention, I do like eggplant on pizza: with artichoke hearts and and alfredo sauce, but this is tempting!

  14. trupti says:

    Your pizza crust does look wicked, and I’ll wait for its recipe….the pizza looks like a delight..I’ll leave out the corn though.

  15. richa says:

    blogging does strange things to us folks, now it’s made you a eggplant devotee :) what next ;)

    bee and eggplant devotee – now you are pushing it :-) –jai

  16. Lata says:

    A different one all together!

  17. Jyothsna says:

    Thats one wicked idea! I can’t stand eggplants. Now I know what to do with bhartas!! ( grinning ear-to-ear)

  18. sharmi says:

    hey that pizza rocks!! but I should skip the “gotsu sitting in the fridge for few days, ehh weeks” part right??:))
    lovely entry!!

    well, the roasted red peppers were probably sitting in the jar in the store for years. ;-) – b.

  19. Mishmash! says:

    One ‘wicked’ perspective….Probably after ur long trip away from home, you might have been craving some home cooked food and your palate must have been ready for any adventure !! Just kidding….OK :) ))

    Shn

    true. very true. – b.

  20. TheCooker says:

    Sounds very CPK-ish.
    If Bee could handle this eggplant, I’ll give it a try as well.

  21. Deepa says:

    Very different and excelelnt pic …

  22. Cynthia says:

    Oh Bee & Jai, I think that you all are onto something here… this can be the new sauce for pizza. I’ve got to keep this in mind when I make pizza.

  23. Very rustic! Hmm, maybe some caramalized onions instead of corn? But that’s just me ;)

  24. Kajal says:

    Very nice and new version…..Great entry for this event.:)

  25. prema says:

    We prepare gotsu for idly or dosa. Iam curious to know how it tasted in a pizza!!!!!.

    try it. if you are already making it anyways then there is no excuse. we liked it. all kinds of indian gravies are amenable to be pizza bases. –jai

  26. Santhi says:

    the simple ‘gotsu’ has been elevated…who would have guessed that we will witness such a great turning point in the ‘trials and tribulations in the life of an eggplant’….( am doing three pranams ;-) )….
    really wicked, you two are, aren’t you??…:-)

  27. viji says:

    How did i miss this wonderful post Bee. It is fabulous. Viji

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