Tuesday, August 19, 2008

A lovely aubergine curry with tomatoes, coriander and nigella seeds as part of an Indian meal

Last weekend I cooked an Indian meal. I don't know if my favourite Indian food bloggers Meeta and Nupur approve, but the meal felt definitely Indian enough for us two :) It wasn't an elaborate feast - I baked some naan-breads and sprinkled them with nigella seeds, made an aromatic chicken curry, roasted some broccoli with garam masala, and prepared a really flavoursome aubergine curry (that's eggplant curry in American English) with tomatoes, coriander and nigella seeds. The latter was the big hit of the night - plenty of flavour and character, beautiful vibrant colours, and not too many calories. The recipe is very slightly adapted from the August 2008 issue of BBC Olive Magazine, and I will definitely make it again if I want a nice vegetarian aubergine dish.

Aubergine curry with tomatoes & coriander
(Vürtsikas pommuhautis tomati ja koriandriga)
Serves 4

1 onion, chopped
1 large or 2 smaller aubergines/eggplants, cut into 1 cm slices
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp nigella seeds
400 grams tomatoes, coarsely chopped
a handful of coriander leaves/cilantro

naan bread and plain yogurt to serve

Fry the onion in some olive oil on a non-stick frying pan for about 7-8 minutes until soft, then tip into a heavy-based saucepan.
Add a little more oil to the frying pan. Add aubergine/eggplant slices and fry until they are browned on each side (you may need to work in batches). This requires patience and cold nerves! Aubergine soaks up all the oil it can get, so don't add more than a little oil at the time - just enough to barely cover the pan. The slices will soften and brown eventually, and even without adding more oil. Trust me!
Add the spices to the onions in the saucepan and fry for about 30 seconds to release the aromas.
Add chopped tomatoes and cook on a moderate heat for about 5 minutes, until the tomatoes soften.
Now add the browned aubergine/eggplant slices and heat through.
Scatter coriander/cilantro leaves on top and serve.

Other recipes with Indian twist on Nami-nami:
Brinjal Masala aka deep-fried baby aubergines (October 2005)
Chicken Korma (October 2005)
Gobi Matar aka Cauliflower & Peas with Cumin (October 2005)
Potatoes & Beetroot Greens with Indian Spices (August 2007)
Smoked cod kedgeree (April 2007)
Strawberry Shrikhand or spiced yogurt with strawberries (October 2005)


Meeta said...

Oh I approve! This looks wonderful. What i do not approve is that you forgot to invite Nupur and me!!

Seriously, I like the way you prepared the aubergine - the spices are not overkill allowing the aromas of the aubergine to take front seat. Lovely!

Shreya said...

Looks great. Wonderful recipe.

Nupur said...

Pille- what a delicious spread!! I can almost smell the fragrant curry and warm breads all the way from St. Louis :)

Alanna said...

Beautiful, Pille!

Sylvie said...

That's definitely going on my to-try-list!

grace said...

yummy! looking delicious...

ChichaJo said...

Looks so delicious! I love the flavors of Indian dishes :) The spices are always so compelling...when I eat Indian food I am totally lost in the moment!

Jeanne said...

This looks wonderful - fairly simple but very tasty. Now that's a ratio I can fully support"

Tartelette said...

I miss saying "aubergine" :)
It looks wonderful and cozy!

Valentina said...

i love your aubergine curry. I must give it a go.

Shayne said...

wow great photos and I have been wanting to get some indian dishes into to menu, thanks for the help.

thepassionatecook said...

This looks and sounds amazing! I bought very nice mezze the other day and one was caramelised aubergine with tamarind syrup - also nice, but I immediately thought of aubergine curry - what a coincidence! now i have just the recipe... thanks!

Mahek said...

great to see Indian food on your blog
you have so much variety on your blog that i am really impressed