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  • Aubergine Masala

    A simple and delicious meat-free alternative to a classic dish. Just serve with fluffy rice and a sprinkling of freshly chopped coriander!

    Photo credit: Jenny Zarins

    Aubergine Masala

    Serves 4

    I N G R E D I E N T S

    4 tbsp sunflower oil
    2 large aubergines, chopped into 4cm cubes
    350g new potatoes, halved
    2 tsp cumin seeds
    1 tsp mustard seeds
    1 tsp fenugreek seeds
    1 large onion, finely chopped
    3 dried curry leaves
    3 tbsp tomato purée
    1 tbsp garlic paste
    1 tbsp ginger paste
    1 tsp ground turmeric
    4 vine tomatoes, finely chopped
    200ml water
    3 tbsp chopped fresh coriander

    For the rice: 
    600ml water
    pinch of salt
    300g basmati rice

    M E T H O D

    Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large frying pan on a high heat. Add the aubergines and fry, stirring often, for 10 minutes or until well browned. Tip the aubergines into a large bowl and set aside.

    Reduce the heat to medium–high and add 1 tablespoon of the oil to the pan. Add the potatoes and fry, stirring often, for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Add the fried potatoes to the aubergines and set aside.

    Heat a large pan on a medium–high heat, add the cumin, mustard and fenugreek seeds and toast until fragrant, roughly 2–3 minutes. Then add the remaining oil and, when it is hot, add the onion and curry leaves and fry for 10 minutes until soft and golden.

    Add the tomato purée and cook for 2 minutes, then add the garlic paste, ginger paste, turmeric and tomatoes. Cook for about 5 minutes, until the tomato juice has evaporated and the mixture is starting to dry out in the pan.

    Meanwhile, prepare the rice. Put the water and salt in a pan and bring to the boil. Add the rice, reduce the heat slightly, cover and boil for 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat, keeping the lid firmly on, and set aside for 10 minutes.

    Add the fried aubergines and potatoes to the curry pan, along with the water. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer, cover and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

    Remove the lid and simmer for 5–10 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. Add half the chopped coriander and stir through.

    Remove the lid from the rice and fluff up with a fork. Serve alongside the curry, sprinkled with the remaining coriander.

    Recipe courtesy of Gurmit Kaur from Together: Our Community Cookbook, a cookbook organised by Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, in aid of the Hubb Community Kitchen, set up for women displaced by the Grenfell Tower fire