Succulent Eggplant Pickles

Rebecca Kravitz from New York City wrote: “Hiya Kurma, do you have a recipe for something nice to do with eggplants? I have a whole box full and I am running out of ideas”.

My reply: Here’s one of my favourite eggplant recipes:

famous eggplant:

Hot & Sweet Eggplant Pickles

This tender and delicious pickle from Maharastra is simultaneously hot, salty, sweet and sour. Select firm, fresh eggplants for best results. You may wish to replace the cayenne with ground chilies of any variety, or with a chili paste such as sambal oelek, in which case the chili should be added towards the end alongside the sugar. Makes 3 cups.

450g eggplants, about 3 medium,
½ cup peanut oil, plus a drizzle more if needed,
2 or 3 teaspoons coarsely minced or chopped ginger,
1 teaspoon yellow asafetida powder,
2 teaspoons salt,
2 teaspoons cayenne pepper,
½ cup apple cider vinegar, or lemon juice,
1 cup raw sugar,
2 teaspoons dry-roasted and ground cumin seeds.

Wash and dry the eggplants. Cut them into wedges, ensuring each wedge has some skin on it.

Heat the oil over moderate heat in a wok until fairly hot. Drop in the ginger and saute for 1 minute, or until aromatic. Sprinkle in the yellow asafetida powder, saute momentarily then add the eggplant, salt and cayenne. Stir-fry the eggplants constantly for about 10 minutes, or until the eggplants are soft enough to pierce with a knife.

Add the vinegar or lemon juice, and the sugar. Reduce the heat and cook for another 10 minutes, or until the eggplants are very tender. Sprinkle in the ground cumin seeds, and remove the pickle from the heat. Allow to cool then serve.

Posted by Kurma on 23/7/11; 5:09:18 AM

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