Recipe: Aubergine with Tamarind and Coconut Milk Curry

Rating: 4.1 stars based on 1435 reviews

Adapted from Madhur Jaffrey's "Maharishtrian Prawns" ("Kolumbi Tse Kalvan"). This dish is tangy and hot, but bathed in a cooling coconut-milk sauce. Don't worry about spices from the marinade remaining in the bowl after you remove the aubergine to fry it; this has been taken into account in the amounts given.

Serves 4 as a side dish.


350g (12 oz weight) aubergine (eggplant)

1 clove garlic, finely crushed

1 tsp finely grated fresh root ginger

3 Tbsp tamarind paste

1/8 tsp ground turmeric

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp hot red chilli powder (cayenne pepper)

3 cloves garlic

1 tsp vegetable oil (don't use less, but no need to use more)

100ml (3.5 fl oz) unsweetened coconut milk

1 Tbsp finely-chopped fresh coriander (cilantro)

2 fresh hot green chillies, very finely chopped


To prepare the aubergine, slice it into rounds about 1 cm (1/2 inch) thick. Stack a few slices on top of each other, and slice again into 1 cm (1/2 inch) thick "matchsticks".

Put the aubergine pieces into a bowl. Add the crushed garlic, ginger, tamarind paste, turmeric, salt and chilli powder. Mix well and set aside for at least 15 minutes to marinade. Pour off any liquid that has accumulated in the bottom of the bowl just before you are ready to make the dish.

Peel the whole garlic cloves and mash lightly but leave whole. Heat the oil in a frying pan over medium-high flame, then add the mashed cloves and stir until they brown lightly. Add the aubergine pieces and continue to stirfry until they are cooked to the consistency you like. Remove from heat briefly and stir in the coconut milk, fresh coriander and chopped green chillies. Return to the heat and stir just until it starts to simmer, then serve.

Will keep very well in the fridge for at least a day or two. I've not tried freezing it.




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