Aubergine Curry (Baingan)

I never used to like eating baingan, I think it must have been their screwed up, un-appetizing look. However, after eating aubergines many times I have grown very fond of them, and they are now one of my favourite vegetables…

Ingredients:

  • Around 20 small aubergines
  • 120ml of oil
  • 3 whole dried red chilies
  • 2tsp jeera (cumin seeds)
  • 1tsp black peppercorns
  • 10 green cardamom pods
  • 5 whole cinnamon sticks
  •  1 tej patta (bay leaf)
  • 2 red onions (diced)
  • small amount of grated fresh ginger
  • 3 cloves of garlic (crushed)
  • 4 tbsp malt vinegar
  • 1tsp haldi (ground turmeric)
  • salt to taste
  • a pinch of garam masala

Method:

  1. Trim the stems of the aubergines. Then slit open each aubergine lengthwise, without removing the aubergine from its stem
  2. In a karahi or pan heat 1tbsp of oil. To this add the red chilies, cumin seeds, black peppercorns, cardamom, cinnamon and bay leaf. Sautee over a medium heat for 5-6 minutes. Cool this down and grind it into a fine powder.
  3. Mix the vinegar into this mix to form a paste
  4. Heat a little of the oil in a karahi. Then fry the aubergines a few at a time, for 5-6 minutes or until they are half cooked. Remove from the heat and keep aside
  5. In the same pan, heat the remaining oil add the onion, garlic and ginger. Sautee this over a medium heat for around 10 mins
  6. Then add the turmeric, garam masala and ground spice paste. Stir this and cook over a medium heat for 4-5 minutes.
  7. Add the salt and 2/3 of a cup of hot water, cook until the water evaporates and the oil almost separates from the sauce
  8. Next, arrange the fried aubergines in the sauce, stir this very carefully before covering the karahi and cooking the dish for 3-4 mins over a low flame
  9. Serve hot accompanied by roti or naan
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