Brinjal (Eggplant) Curry

Total Time
Prep 30 mins
Cook 30 mins

This aubergine bhaji recipe has won rave reviews from my South Indian in-laws, who have very discerning palates when it comes to authentic currys. This dish can either be used as a side dish, or as a vegetarian main dish. It's easy, delicious and a great way to introduce different veggies to your kids.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Cut the eggplants into 1-inch pieces- preferably keeping at least one side of each piece with the skin on.
  2. Put the eggplant pieces into a strainer and sprinkle liberally with salt. Place a small plate on top of the eggplant, and a weight on top of the plate- this process draws the excess water out of the eggplant, and it won't be overly salty. Leave for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Heat 1 1/2 tbsp oil in a heavy pan. When hot, add mustard seeds- they will start to pop in a few seconds. When they begin to pop, add the sliced onions, garlic and ginger. Turn the heat to medium, and cook until mixture is nicely browned.
  4. Add cayenne pepper, tumeric, garam masala and cumin to the onion mixture. Cook spices for a few minutes, then add water and tomato paste, and reduce heat to low. Let the sauce cook gently, but don't allow it to become dry.
  5. In a large skillet, heat 1 1/2 tbsp oil over moderate heat. Add eggplant pieces to the pan, and arrange in a single layer. Saute until all sides are brown and crisp.
  6. Once all eggplant pieces are browned, incorporate them into the sauce pan, making sure to cover all pieces with the sauce. Add lemon juice and salt.
  7. Cook gently until eggplant is cooked through (about 15-20 minutes). Stir occasionally (and very gently) and serve.
Most Helpful

Yummy, yummy! I made this pretty much as written - except I used fresh chillies instead of cayenne, and to cut down on washing up I browned the aubergine in the same pan that I later used to make the sauce.

Hawthorne January 05, 2009

This was so very good, the addition of the mustard seeds really added to the overall flavour. I used fresh hot peppers in lieu of the cayenne, and also threw in some tomatoes.

ChefDebs August 23, 2008

Very tasty! I had a large eggplant so doubled the spice ingredients. I also sliced the eggplant instead of cubing and cooked them first on a griddle pan - looks good (see the picture I posted) and cooks quicker. I also threw in a can of diced tomatoes and 2 fresh tomatoes sliced into eighths, as suggested in some other eggplant curry recipes. Worked well!

Baz October 03, 2012