Please Pass the Recipe

sharing recipes from one generation to the next

Sesame and Tamarind Eggplants

Sesame and Tamarind Eggplantsq Sesame and Tamarind Eggplants

It’s lucky that the only produce in the fridge left to use the night before our weekly trip to the Farmers Market was a few over ripe tomatoes and a couple of wrinkled eggplants because I might not have tried this simple tasty dish otherwise.

Usually when I have limited ingredients I make a curry, but this time, with these ingredients, I just couldn’t  bring an idea to fruition so I searched “Eat Your Books,” a website I use that creates an index of all the recipes in the cookbooks on your kitchen shelf. 

The result was a long list of recipes using eggplants and tomatoes, although most also needed a pantry full of ingredients that I didn’t have to hand. I seriously considered rice stuffed eggplants, but with curry on my mind, I kept scrolling. On the 10th page of the search results, this recipe caught my eye. It’s from “Fresh India” by Meera Sodha, a book I confess to under utilising.

Meera Sodha is young English woman of Indian heritage. She has written a couple of cookbooks based on family favourites, vegetarian recipes her mother adapted and created using traditional Gujarati know how within the confines of what was available to her in rural England. 

In “Fresh India,” her second book, Meera has taken the recipes a step further and applied savvy use of  modern techniques with an eye to current food fashion. Sodha’s food is distinctly Indian but also light, fresh and modern. 

I only made a few minor changes to the original recipe to bring it into line with my tummy friendly diet. This is my version of Sesame and Tamarind Eggplants from “Fresh India” by Meera Sodha.

Sesame and Tamarind Eggplants serves 4 as an accompaniment

3 ripe roma tomatoes, roughly chopped

2 tablespoons sesame seeds

2 teaspoons tamarind paste

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon ground coriander

1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric

1/2 teaspoon crushed chilli

1 teaspoon sea salt flakes

2 tablespoons peanut oil

1 tablespoon garlic infused oil

2 medium eggplants, about 600g, cut into 2cm X 6cm batons

generous pinch of asafoetida (optional)

freshly ground black pepper

extra sea salt to taste

fresh coriander leaves roughly chopped

thick natural yoghurt

Put the tomatoes, sesame seeds, tamarind, spices and salt into the food processor and blend into a loose paste. Set aside

Heat the oils in a large lidded frypan add the eggplants and sprinkle over the asafoetida then saute the eggplants until well coloured.

Add the paste and 1/2 cup water to the pan.

Stir the sauce through the eggplants then cover and cook on a high simmer until the eggplants are soft, about 10 minutes, adding a little extra water to prevent the vegetables sticking.

Taste and adjust the seasonings to suit your palate.

Scatter with chopped fresh coriander leaves.

Serve with steamed millet and a large dollop of thick natural yoghurt


About ladyredspecs

I live in sunny Brisbane, Australia. My love of good food drives me as a cook, a reader, a traveller, an artist and but mostly as an eater. I cooked professionally for many years but have no formal training. Simply guided by a love of eating good food, respect for ingredients and an abhorrence of artificial additives, I cook instinctively applying the technical know how acquired by experience. I hope you enjoy what I share Sandra AKA ladyredspecs

11 comments on “Sesame and Tamarind Eggplants

  1. sherry
    April 26, 2019

    but i don’t get Eat your books:-) i signed up but it makes no sense to me… i just google recipes or open my books myself …


    • ladyredspecs
      April 27, 2019

      Eat You Books is great if you can’t remember which book a recipe is in, or you have a bunch of ingredients and are looking for inspiration. Once you have entered all the titles on your bookshelf it acts like a giant index search engine of your library. I haven’t really got into uploading reviews and photos, but occasionally I join in their FB cookbook club


  2. sherry
    April 26, 2019

    I love eggplant!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Debi @ An Evolving Life
    April 23, 2019

    I don’t know Meera Sodha’s book ‘Fresh India’, but will definitely buy it since it will become essential once we return to the UK (and its limited produce). Might even try it here in Greece since I brought back tamarind paste last time we were the UK. Happy Easter to you (the one past and the Orthodox one yet to come).


  4. Beck @ Goldenpudding
    April 22, 2019

    I echo your endorsement of both Eat Your Books and Meera Sodha, though I have her first book – will have to get Fresh India too 🙂


  5. Michelle
    April 20, 2019

    I adore her books!


  6. Eha
    April 18, 2019

    You state you under-utilize Meera Sodha – I have planned to buy her books for ages and still have not done so. Off to Booktopia from your site 🙂 ! The premise of ‘Fresh India’ attracts and I love the sound of the recipe. ‘Sesame’, ‘tamarind’ and ‘eggplant’ are all magical words in my kitchen and I have not used the latter cut up for ages. Perchance instead of garlic oil some cloves will be smashed instead . . . but that may have been your alteration anyways . . . oh, do have a happy, healthy Easter !


    • ladyredspecs
      April 19, 2019

      Happy Easter to you too Eha. Garlic cloves would always be a first preference but alas I have to compromise


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