Vegan turmeric curry
I’m checking in really quickly to bring you a new recipe for a vegan turmeric curry with chickpeas and aubergines (eggplants). It’s a very simple recipe and doesn’t contain many photos as I am spending this week taking it easy. I am practising a lot of self-care and I’m already feeling much better than I did last weekend. I’ve been making full use of the beautiful late September sun that we’ve been blessed with lately and spending as much time in my hammock (even if I need a blanket to keep me warm) reading and decompressing.
I’ve decided I need to get a little more serious about meditation, which I have been doing on and off for a few years now, and I am doing my best to practise it daily alongside yoga or running. Unsurprisingly, I found that meditating, exercise and being outside, away from screens of all sorts, really does make a massive difference to how I feel. The key is sticking to it through thick and thin as I do have a propensity to ditch it when I no longer need it (meditation) or it tends to fall by the wayside when life gets busy and stressful (like the recent renovation), which is ironic as that’s when it’s needed most. I also got myself a CBT workbook and I’m going through it in the hope that I pick up some useful strategies and techniques that will enable me to cope better with stress. It’s little steps and it’s all a journey but the cost of doing nothing is just too great.
- 1 medium eggplant / aubergine, cut into chunks
- 2 tbsp / 30 ml vegetable oil
- ½ tsp black mustard seeds
- 8 dry (or fresh ones if you can find them) curry leaves
- 3 small shallots / 1 small onion, diced finely
- 3 garlic cloves, diced finely
- 40 g / 1½ oz fresh ginger, finely chopped / grated
- ½ medium hot red chilli, sliced (optional, adjust to taste)
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 2 tsp ground turmeric
- 1 tsp garam masala
- ¾ tsp salt, adjust to taste
- 400 ml / 14 oz can full fat coconut milk
- 400 g / 14 oz can (2 cups) cooked chickpeas
- 30 ml / 2 tbsp lime juice, adjust to taste
- 5 ml / 1 tsp maple syrup or sugar (optional)
- fresh coriander, to serve
- Heat up the oven to 200° C / 390° F. Arrange aubergine / eggplant pieces on a baking tray (SEE NOTES*).
- Bake for 20 minutes, flipping the pieces to the other side halfway through.
- Next, toss pre-baked aubergine / eggplant in 10 ml / 2 tsp of oil and return to the oven for further 5-10 minutes to finish off.
- Heat up remaining 4 tsp oil in a heavy-bottomed pan. Add mustard seeds and curry leaves and fry them off gently until mustard seeds start to crackle.
- Add the diced shallots and fry on a low heat until almost translucent (for about 5-7 minutes), stirring from time to time.
- Next add in diced garlic, ginger and chilli (if using). Keep on frying gently for a few more minutes until fragrant, stirring frequently as they burn easily.
- Add ½ tsp of salt and all of the dry spices stir them around for a few seconds, making sure they don’t burn – if the pan gets too dry, add a splash of water.
- Add in a splash of water and coconut milk to the pan.
- Allow the sauce to come to a gentle simmer. Add drained chickpeas and simmer on a low heat for 5 minutes.
- Taste the sauce and adjust the seasoning with more salt (if needed), lime juice and a little bit of maple syrup for balance.
- Serve the curry and the aubergine chunks on top of rice or / and vegan naan and garnish with fresh coriander.
*AUBERGINE / EGGPLANT: You could also fry aubergine off in oil first, but it does tend to absorb a lot of oil or simmer it in the curry sauce but I find that option a little bland, which is why I prefer to bake it in the oven.
If you can, allow the curry flavours to develop overnight as it always tastes better the day after it has been made.