Curried Eggplant (version II)

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2 to 3 medium globe eggplants, each weighing about one pound
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups chopped yellow onions
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/4 cup grated ginger root
2 teaspoons ground coriander
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon cayenne or more to taste
lemon juice to taste
yogurt, optional
1 cup diced tomatoes, optional
2 to 3 tablespoons chopped cilantro, optional

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.

Place the eggplant in a baking pan and prick them with a fork. Bake until very tender, about 3/4 hour. Set in a drainer. When cool enough to handle, peel the eggplant, discard any large seed pockets, and transfer the pulp to a strainer. Coarsely chop the eggplant or pulse quickly in a food processor.

In a medium sauté pan over moderate heat, warm the olive oil and cook the onions until translucent, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger and spices and cook for five minutes. Add the eggplant. Heat through and then season with salt and pepper and lemon juice to taste. Then add yogurt if the eggplant needs a smoothing out of flavor. Chopped tomatoes may be added at end. Garnish with chopped cilantro.

Serves 6

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