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Vegan Brinjal (Eggplant) Curry
This vegan brinjal curry consists of beautifully roasted eggplants simmered in a strong and delicious blend of Indian spices. Serve over fluffy Basmati rice with a dollop of yoghurt and sprinkle of fresh coriander.
The recipe is part of the must-try vegan curries series.
- Creates: 4 serves
- Dietary: V | VG | GF | NF
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 55 minutes
- Total Time: 60 minutes
- 2 medium eggplants, sliced into halves
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
- 1-2 tbsp olive oil
Vegan Brinjal Curry
- 1 brown onion, finely diced
- 1 green chilli, halved
- 3 tbsp tomato passata
- 1 tsp black mustard seed
- 10 dried curry leaves
- 3 tsp dried coriander
- 1/4 tsp cardamom powder
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper, to taste
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp turmeric
- 4 tsp ground cumin
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 tbsp ginger, freshly grated
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- Salt and black pepper, to taste
- 2-3 tbsp coconut milk (optional)
- Serve with: coconut milk, basmati rice, naan, vegan yoghurt, coriander
Prepare the eggplants and roast them while you’re making the curry. By the time they’re finished roasting, you should be able to add them to the curry straight away.
- Preheat oven to 200°C. Line tray with baking paper.
- Combine eggplant with oil, salt and pepper in a bowl. Transfer to baking tray and roast for 25-30 minutes, turning once half-way through.
Vegan Brinjal Curry
- Drizzle olive oil in a dutch oven or pot over medium heat. Sauté mustard seeds and curry leaves for a few minutes until they pop.
- Add in onions and cook until golden brown and fragrant.
- Add in green chilli, dried coriander, cardamom, cayenne, black pepper, turmeric and cumin. Cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently to avoid the spices sticking to the bottom.
- Add in tomato, garlic, ginger and salt. Stir to combine. Cook for another 2-3 minutes. Pour in water.
- Transfer the roasted eggplants from the oven into the pot. Reduce heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes. Add more water or simmer a bit longer depending on your choice of consistency*.
- Optional: Sometimes I like to brighten up the curry by stirring in coconut milk. If I’m feeling a very strong curry then I leave it as it is.
- Serve with basmati rice or Indian flatbread^, yoghurt and fresh coriander.
*Add more water to get a thicker, gravy-like curry or reduce the water to have a drier curry
^I prefer rice with this vegan brinjal curry because rice offsets the strong flavours well.
- Salting the eggplants beforehand: you can bathe the eggplants in salt water before if you wish but I usually don’t do this to my eggplant recipes because I’ve never had a problem with bitterness before.
- Gluten-free: this recipe is gluten-free but make sure to use gluten-free rice and naan if using.
How to Make it Whole Foods
At Embody Nourish, we promote a plant-based diet that comprise mainly of whole foods. This means no oil (even ‘healthy’ oils such as coconut or olive oil), refined or processed foods. However we understand that this ideal is not yet mainstream so we strive to accomodate everyone while encouraging small changes.
You can make this vegan brinjal recipe more whole foods by: (this is a pretty good whole foods recipe actually!)
- Omitting oil when roasting the eggplants (yes, it’s possible to roast vegetables without using oil!)
- Serving the curry with brown rice or wholemeal flatbread.