My love for Sri Lankan green eggplant curry goes way back. A medium spicy, savory but creamy red curry sauce is gives perfectly balance flavor boost to this mildly bitter but delicious Thai aubergine variety that is also quite popular in Sri Lanka.
The Thai green aubergine
Although Sri Lankan green eggplant curry is little different to This green eggplant curry, overall, this uniquely flavorful vegetable is great for making medium spicy curries.
The aubergine, a unique and tasty variety of eggplants that is widely used in Thai cuisine. It is a small and round vegetable that is green with white markings. It has a buttery texture and a slightly strong flavor that complements spicy and savory curried dishes. Thai eggplants can be cooked several diverse ways, such as roasting, grilling, or stir-frying.
Happy father’s day to all the foodie dads out thereLeather Knife Roll | Knife Bag | Chefs Roll Bag f Knifes | Luxury Leather Gift | Gift for Men | Chef Gift | Foodie Gift | Leather Kniferoll
One of the most popular dishes that uses Thai aubergine is Thai basil eggplant, a form of a green eggplant curry that is vegan and gluten-free dish that combines eggplant, peppers, onion, garlic, ginger, chili, and basil in a sweet and salty sauce. Another delicious recipe is roasted Thai eggplant with cherry tomatoes and basil, a simple and satisfying dish that pairs eggplant with shallot, mirin, soy sauce, sesame oil, agave syrup, lime juice, peanuts, and scallions.
You can also make Thai green eggplant curry, a creamy and flavorful dish that cooks eggplant with Thai green curry paste, coconut milk, cilantro or basil, and jalapeno or Thai chili. Thai aubergine is not only delicious but also nutritious. It is rich in antioxidants, fiber, and vitamin C. You can find Thai aubergine at Asian markets or specialty stores. I find them more often these days to my immense joy!
Sri Lankan way of making green eggplant curry
little green aubergines or Thai green eggplants with its waxy olive-green outer skin, creamy color dense flesh and small seeds turn amazingly buttery flavorful in medium spicy and tangy curry sauce cooked with perfect red curry seasoning blend, coconut cream and Malabar tamarind. Malabar tamarind adds a little sour sharpness to this curry sauce that makes it wonderful curry to pair with red rice.
A green eggplant curry in fact, is my favorite way of cooking these little flavor bombs of vegetable over any grilling frying or stir-frying them.
Earthenware cookpots are the best fit to make Sri Lankan style spicy and tangy red curries. After a little trial and error to find a perfect cookpot, now I am a proud owner of Cazuela / rustic Mexican earthenware pot.
Aubergine curry is made by splitting eggplants in quarters and cooking it with spices and coconut oil finishing it with splash of coconut milk. My favorite Sri Lankan menu with green eggplant curry is steamed red rice, spicy coconut sambal and mild yellow fish curry.
It is fragrant, with medium heat from cayenne pepper and lots of curry seasoning flavor infused with creaminess of coconut milk. When it comes to currying little green aubergines, I follow my mother’s recipe for the last dot because it’s that good.
How to clean and prep green aubergines
Aubergines can really stain your hands if you do not mind the fingertips. Protect your fingertips with a glove or rub some olive oil in your hand before cutting into these green aubergines.
The exposed flesh of eggplants turns brown fast, if the cleaned eggplants are not kept submerged in a bowl of water. My mom’s way was to wrap them in a towel and smash them out and remove the seed pods with a fork or a boning knife, then throw keep in a salty water bowl. However, over the years I have learned that tender green eggplants can be cooked without removing the seed sacs. Rinse the eggplants and quarter them and leave the eggplants quarters in bowl of water with little salt in it.
Once the aubergines are washed and quartered, and set aside prepare a curry seasoning paste to marinate them in.
Curry mix and marinating
Perfect Sri Lankan curry mix green eggplant curry is a one that has a medium spicy, aromatic blend with cumin, chilies, coriander. Mustard and Malabar tamarind help to add a little bit of sharpness that cut through the slightly bitter taste of green aubergines and convert it to a buttery taste. Coconut cream, cinnamon, lemongrass, and aromatic dry spices gives this sauce the ultimate gourmet curry experience.
My favorite way to get maximum flavor from the spices is to warm them up in the skillet and grind them slowly in a mini mortar and pestle. Add water, vinegar, or oil as you need to extract the flavor while grinding. Any spice mix made this way gives the best curry sauce when cooking.
Resulting from this spice mix is a delicious vegetable curry that is no second to any meat curry but completely plant based and vegan.
Measure out red curry powder and turmeric and salt in a bowl. Grind mustard seeds in a motor and pestle. In the same motor and pestle, crush, green chilies, ginger, and garlic. Crush cardamom and cloves. mix everything into the curry powder mix and make a paste with little olive oil. Use the paste to marinate quartered green eggplants.
Marinating cubed aubergines in little salt water and then curry mix powder certainly helps develop great flavor before cooking green eggplant curry. Spices hitting the hot oil and roasting in with the vegetables gives this green eggplant curry a highly desirable nice toasty flavor.
Green eggplant curry recipe Ceylonese style
- 8 to 10 green aubergines
- 4 green chilies
- Handful of curry leaves
- 1 medium red onion
- 1 inch piece of ginger
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 1 stick of lemongrass
- 3 pieces of pandan leaf
- 2 cardamom pods
- 2 cloves
- 1 inch stick of cinnamon
- 3 1/2 tbsp of red curry powder
- 1/2 tsp of turmeric powder
- Salt according to taste
- 2 cloves Malabar tamarind
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- ¼ tsp fenugreek seeds
- 2 tbsp Coconut oil
- ½ cup water
- 2 tbsp Coconut cream
- Clean, drain and quarter green eggplants. Coat with curry mix powder we made and let the seasonings soak in for five minutes.
- heat one teaspoon of coconut oil in a heavy bottomed skillet. Add stick of cinnamon and fenugreek seeds. Add marinated green eggplants right after. Toss in hot oil for three to four minutes until curry mix and toasted eggplants are fragrant.
- Add Malabar tamarind and pandan leaves, curry leaves and lemongrass. Turn the heat low, cover with a lid, and let the eggplants steam in their own juices for a few minutes.
- Add a splash of water or light coconut milk and give a gentle mix.
- Cover with a lid and cook until aubergines are soft, and the curry sauce becomes thick. Adjust the salt to your taste and finish with a splash of thick coconut cream. Cook about an additional minute or two until coconut cream is combined, hot and bubbly.
- Serve hot with hot brown or red rice or slice of sourdough bread on the side.