Eggplant is a sadly neglected vegetable, I think mainly because many people who first encounter eggplant find it bland or mushy. But if a bit of care and attention is taken, then eggplant can shine in its own right, and certainly enhance a dish.
Not everybody likes aubergines but I think they are such underrated vegetables and have so many culinary uses that I’m often spoilt for choice with what to cook with them.
High up on the list is always a curry and sometimes you just can’t beat a good aubergine curry specially when it’s packed with spices and a rich sauce.
The recipe below is always welcome when I have a spare aubergine lying around in the pantry. It is one that does not need any huge amount of prep or time other than frying the aubergines. I think that’s well worth the final dish.
Please do give it a go, it’s great as a side or a vegetarian option.
I used a smaller baby aubergines today only as I had them in the fridge one large aubergine will suffice.
2 medium sized tomatoes blended
1 cup of peas
6 tablespoons of oil
1 medium onion finely chopped
2 tsp of coriander powder
1 1/2 tsp of Kashmiri chili powder
Half a tsp of turmeric powder
1 tsp dried Kasuri methi
2 green chillies chopped.
1 tsp cumin seeds
Small handful of fresh chopped coriander
1 dried whole chilli
1 tsp garlic and ginger paste
1 garlic clove finely chopped
2 tbsp of cream
1 tsp of garam masala
Wash the whole aubergines and slice thin length ways then half so they are easy to fry.
Add 2 tbsp oil to the frying pan.
Gently fry the aubergines with some salt until golden brown. Set aside.
In the in the same pan add another 2bsp oil then add the chopped garlic clove and the cumin seeds and wait till its roasty and aromatic.
Now add the finely minced onion and chopped chillies to the garlic and cumin seeds. Continue to cook until your onion is golden brown.
Once the onions are golden brown add salt and ginger garlic paste, stir this in well.
Now add your tomato blend and let this cook for a couple of minutes on medium heat until the oil separates.
Add the coriander powder, Kashmiri chilli powder, turmeric and mix all the ingredients together well. Add splashes of water if needed to loosen it.
Cover with a lid and cook for 2 to 3 minutes on a low flame till the oil starts to split.
Now add half a cup of water, your sauted aubergines, torn red chillies and cook this well for 5 to 6 minutes on low.
Check the aubergines to ensure that the masala is cooking well and add a little more water if needed and cook again until the aubergines are soft and mushy. Key is to cook on low and slow insuring the oil splits.
When the aubergines are cooked through and mushy and the oil has split, you now add the peas and dried kasuri methi and the cream. Mix in well and cook this covered for a further couple of minutes on low.
Add quarter cup water and cook till you have oil splitting at the sides. Much of the liquid should be absorbed.
Lastly add chopped coriander and garam masala and mix in. Continue to cook on low for a minute or two until the oil is splitting at the sides. Your dish is done!
Serve with chappitis, puri or naan.
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