150ml vegetable oil

50g minced garlic

50g minced ginger

2 large white onions (approx 200g), finely chopped

1 large tomato (approx 100g), finely chopped

30g tamarind sauce/paste

50g peanut butter

50g tahini (sesame) paste

50g jaggery

30g chilli powder (medium)

20g turmeric powder

30g coriander powder

200ml water

500g baby aubergines, cut into a 2-inch dice

100ml coconut milk

1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds (optional)


Sweet, sour, spicy and nutty, this classic aubergine curry from Hyderabad in South India is next-level comfort food – and a Curry Leaf Cafe bestseller. Traditionally made with baby aubergines, large ones can also be used if needed.


In a large casserole dish/saucepan, heat 100ml of the oil over low-medium flame until it starts to sizzle. Add the ginger & garlic paste and cook until it starts to turn light brown (approx 5 mins).
Add the chopped onion and slow-cook, stirring frequently, until it turns soft and golden (around 20mins). Add the chopped tomato, stir together and cook for a further 5 minutes.
Add the tamarind, peanut butter, tahini, jaggery and spices, then pour in 200ml of water and mix thoroughly – the sauce should be quite thick.
Bring to the boil, then lower the heat to a gentle simmer

Meanwhile, heat the remaining vegetable oil in a large frying pan over a medium-low heat.
When the oil is sizzling add the diced aubergine and fry gently, turning frequently, until soft and light brown – around 10mins.
Using a slotted spoon, transfer the aubergine to the casserole dish, pour in the coconut milk, stir everything together carefully and bring to the boil.
Garnish with toasted sesame seeds (optional) and serve with basmati rice or paratha bread for dipping.

Features more veg
Features more veg