Oil-free aubergine (eggplant) dishes can be tricky because the aubergine often dries out. The secret to this recipe, though, is to roast the aubergine before simmering it in the sauce. This is a fairly straightforward recipe, and once the aubergine is roasted it comes together really quickly. I like to make it in advance and allow the flavours to meld before reheating it over a low flame, but that’s not at all necessary. Serves 4.
3 aubergines (eggplants), cut in bite size chunks
½ red onion, sliced
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 inch piece ginger, grated
1 red chilli, deseeded and chopped
400g chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
1 can light coconut milk, shaken well to combine
200g can tomatoes (half a regular can)
50g greens of choice, in bite-size pieces
1/2 cup vegetable broth
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp lime juice
1 tsp salt
1 tsp maple syrup
2 heaped tsp suitable-for-vegan massaman curry paste (if you can’t find this, use a suitable-for-vegan red curry paste)
1. Preheat the oven to 180C. Line a baking tray with a silicone sheet or parchment, and add the aubergine in a single layer. Roast for 20 minutes, and then remove from the oven.
2. Meanwhile, heat a large stainless steel pot over a medium-low heat until hot. Add the onions and sauté for 2 minutes until softened and lightly coloured, adding a few drops of water if the onion starts to stick. Add the garlic, ginger, and chilli for 30 seconds more, stirring constantly.
3. Add the rest of the ingredients, including the aubergine, to the pot. Simmer for 5 minutes to warm everything through and allow the flavours to merge a little. Serve with some rice, or other grain.