Over the past few months I’ve been asked by some of you to share more vegetarian recipes. I’m not a specialist in the matter, but I do take pleasure in eating meat-free meals from time to time. So this gives me a great motive to learn more on the subject and I intend on fulfilling your request.
So keeping up with the New Year’s resolutions mindset, I thought it would be the perfect time to introduce a veggie curry that is both healthy and low in calories. Despite my love for a good protein, discovering a new vegetarian recipe is always exciting and I hope you’ll enjoy this one as much as I do.
If you are scared of starving to death than you can rest at ease. The nuts and chickpeas are rich in proteins and will sustain you until your next meal. Plus, the roasted aubergines add a beautiful creaminess that I find quite comforting.
Aubergine can be quite bitter and roasting them is the simplest way I’ve found of getting rid of this taste. It reduces the amount of oil needed and, although it takes more time, it leaves your hands free to move ahead with other bits of the recipe.
-Simple, home-made, nutty curry paste-
Since the paste is based on curry powder, choose it wisely. If you like a curry with a good kick, then a spicy powder will definitely set up the right tone. Opt for a mild roasted powder if you prefer a deeper flavor. Or, why not mix both if you have them at home?
The raita is optional, but I personally can’t go without it when I’m savoring a curry. It may be to soothe my burning palate or to dip my naan bread, I just love the cool factor it brings to the table.
- 1 Aubergine
- Olive oil
- 2 tbsp Almond flakes
- 1 Onion, sliced
- 2cm Ginger
- 1/2 tbsp Curry powder
- Small handful Coriander (leaves and stalks seperate)
- 125ml (1/2 cup) Yogurt, full fat
- 1/2 can Chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 2 tbsp Yogurt
- 1,5cm Cucumber
- 3-4 mint leaves
- Salt and pepper
- Turn the oven on to Broil (or grill).
- Cut the aubergine into 1cm thick coins, drizzle with olive oil and season on both sides. Arrange them in one layer on a baking sheet and cook in the over for 20 minutes, turning them halfway through.
- In the meantime, toast the almond flakes in a dry pan over medium-high heat until golden-brown and fragrant. Keep aside.
- Sliced the onion and in the same pan as above fry with 1/2 tbsp of olive oil over medium heat until golden. It should take about 10 minutes.
- While the onions cook, make the curry paste by crushing the almond flakes in a pestle and mortar. Add the finely sliced coriander stems, the curry powder and the finely grated ginger. Pestle until you have a smooth paste.
- Add the paste to the onions and fry for 1-2 minutes. Reduce the heat to low and add the yogurt with 200ml of water. Stir and add the chickpeas.
- Take the aubergine out of the oven and toss in with the curry. Cook until all is warm through.
- Make the raita by cutting the cucumber into small cubes, finely chopping the mint and mixing all the ingredients together.
- Serve the curry over rice with a scatter of coriander leaves and a good spoonful of raita.
- I always keep my ginger in the freezer. Not only does it last longer but it makes the grating much easier.
- This recipe can easily be frozen, simply let it thaw completely before reheating it. I would normally skip this step and thaw/reheat it all in one in the oven, but I would avoid it for this specific dish as the moisture is quite low and this technique would probably dry it out.