• Payal Maharaj

Mum's Favorite Eggplant Curry

Updated: Apr 29



So lots has been happening and I got a bit behind on my posts buuut I did discover another one of my mum's favorite dishes! Eggplant curry! This dish technically does not use any masalas (curry powders) but if you have been following my other posts, then you will know that I am not sure what to call our masala-less dishes. For now I am calling it eggplant curry. Anyways, I love this dish too. It is luxurious, melt-in-your-mouth, spicy and garlicky in all the right ways and an extremely quick dish to make. But then I love all things eggplant so maybe I am a bit biased. Maybe. It is such a versatile vegetable and almost every culture uses it in some delicious way. In any case, I love that my mum and I have a dish we both enjoy! So keep reading for the recipe!

This recipe uses Asian eggplants. We use those quite a bit in our cooking due to its availability where I grew up. We buy them from the Asian grocery stores here. I think I have seen them in regular American grocery stores too. Which is something that I am loving a lot. Seeing the foods I grew up with gaining popularity here and maybe in other places too. Love it. Happy heart.

Ok! So I digressed a bit. Back to the eggplants. Try to pick out tender eggplants. So they should be a nice purple color but not too dark. The dark ones tend to be older so the skin and the seeds inside are tougher. If you only find extra dark ones, you can peel the tougher parts of the skin off. The picture shows two eggplants but this recipe calls for four.


The eggplants should be washed, and sliced lengthwise into sticks. Like French fries or carrot sticks almost. Then heat up oil. This recipe uses more oil than the other recipes I have posted. This is because the eggplant sort of gets shallow fried in the oil and also because the eggplant soaks up a lot of oil. Once oil is heated, add mustard and cumin seeds. When they start to sputter, add diced onions and curry leaves. When onion edges get brown, add garlic, ginger and chilis if using. I would suggest to add chilis to this dish. Whatever you can handle. It is still tasty without chilis.



After garlic and ginger have cooked and become aromatic, add eggplant sticks. Add salt. Mix well. Turn heat to medium-high and let eggplants cook down.



The eggplant will become mushier and mushier over time. Keep stirring so it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pot. Keep cooking until eggplant has cooked down completely and has turned a dark purple-brownish color. The eggplant is done at this point. After this, turn off heat and drain off excess oil if you want. My mum likes to lean the pot against the side of the stove, spoon the eggplant to the higher side of the pot and let the excess oil drip down.



Then you can scoop up the eggplant, place in a dish for serving and garnish with cilantro if desired. Dish is best served hot with fresh rotis and can be eaten over rice too. Tastes greats with dhal and rice as well! Enjoy!


RECIPE:

Serves 4

Prep time 10 minutes

Cook time 15-20 minutes

Ingredients:

4 Asian eggplants sliced into sticks

1/8 cup extra virgin olive oil

1/4 tsp mustard seeds

1/4 tsp cumin seeds

Handful of curry leaves (optional)

1/2 cup diced onions

1 tbsp crushed garlic

1 tbsp crushed ginger

1 tsp crushed Thai chilis (optional)

Salt to taste

Handful of chopped cilantro (optional)

Method:

  1. Wash and slice eggplant into sticks. Much like French fries or carrot sticks.

  2. Heat oil up oil on medium. Add mustard seeds and cumin seeds.

  3. Once they sputter add, diced onions and curry leaves.

  4. Once onions brown, add ginger, garlic and chilis if using. Let cook until aromatic. One or two minutes.

  5. Add eggplant sticks. Add salt. Mix well.

  6. Turn heat to medium-high. Cover and let cook. Stir frequently to prevent eggplant from sticking to the bottom of the pot.

  7. Cook down until eggplant is thoroughly cooked. It will look dark purple-brown by this point.

  8. Remove from heat. Drain excess oil.

  9. Serve hot with rotis or rice! Enjoy!


Notes:

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