Baby Aubergines with Dill & Coconut

PREP TIME: 10mins


I had a tray full of small baby aubergines thanks to my weekly organic veggie deliveries and I knew I wanted to add some Indian flavours to them.

I found the inspiration I was looking for in Zaika by Romy Gill. Creamy aubergines in a decadent sweet spiced coconut sauce.

Like me, you might think that dill is an unusual herb to see in a traditional Indian curry (or is it?) but it works beautifully.

The aubergines needs to be really small (about 7cm), if larger you can cut into smaller quarters baring in mind that the texture of the dish will be a bit different as the aubergine pieces will collapse. Because of this you might need to adjust the cooking time (to less) to make sure aubergines hold their shape.

Getting Ahead: as with all things spiced – the curry will just get better, so feel free to make a few days ahead.


Serving Suggestion:

I served the curry with some store bought Jalapeno Atchar, a very very good cabbage dish, a dollop of yogurt and some homemade wholewheat roti. It will equally go well with my flatbreads, naan or paratha or rice.


What you'll need:

1 frying pan and 1 saucepan


  • 6 tablespoons sunflower oil
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 10 small aubergines, sliced in half but not all the way through
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 large onions, finely chopped
  • 3 green chillies, deseeded if not keen on heat, finely chopped
  • 40g dill, chopped
  • 3 fresh tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 2 teaspoons coriander
  • 1 x tin coconut milk
  • 2 teaspoons salt


  1. Heat half the oil (3 tablespoons) in a wok or deep frying pan. Add the cumin seeds and the whole baby aubergines and fry until half cooked, this will take about 10 minutes. Adjusting the temperature to make sure that nothing burns.
  2. While the aubergines are cooking, heat the rest of the oil in a saucepan and add the garlic, cook for 1 minute and then add the onions and cook all together, covered, until the onions are super soft and are starting to caramelise.
  3. Add the chillies, tomatoes and dill, stir everything together and cook for 3 minutes.
  4. Add the rest of the spices, salt and coconut milk and bring to a simmer cooking the sauce for a further 3 minutes.
  5. Add the fried aubergines to the sauce and stir gently to combine taking care not break the aubergines apart, then simmer gently until the aubergines are soft, stirring occasionally.
  6. Once cooked, leave to rest for an hour before serving, as it will become more flavoursome over time.
  7. Serve with a bread of some sort on the side and a dollop of yogurt.
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