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Smoky Aubergine & Tomato Curry

Smokey Aubergine Curry


Smoky Aubergine & Tomato Curry


I love it when aubergines are in season, as they are one of my favourite vegetables to cook with and eat. Their silky rich flesh is well suited to take on Indian flavours and spices, and the addition of black honey at the end of cooking gives this curry a lovely, sweet depth.


When selecting aubergines from the market, always choose shiny plump fruit, and if you are picking them from your garden, you want to cut them from the plant before they move past this stage. 

Black honey is honey that has been infused with black garlic, giving it a deep tangy umami flavour profile, and turning it from a super food to an amped up super super food. 

You can buy a wonderful New Zealand made black honey here 


Serves 4 



  • 2 medium sized aubergines 

  • ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons rice bran oil  

  • 1 tablespoon black mustard seeds 

  • 1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds 

  • 1 onion, sliced into crescents  

  • 1 fresh large green chili, such as poblano or jalapeno, seeds and pith removed, thinly sliced 

  • 6 large tomatoes, chopped (optional, remove the skins first, see note at the bottom of the recipe) 

  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin 

  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika 

  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander 

  • ½ teaspoon garam masala 

  • 1 teaspoon salt 

  • 1 large tablespoon black honey 

  • Fresh coriander to top 




  1. Slice the aubergines into thirds widthwise, then sit each piece cut side down and cut into wedges – you should get about eight wedges from each third of aubergine. 

  2. Heat the ½ cup oil in a large frying pan and fry the aubergine pieces until golden brown all over. You may need to do this in a couple of batches. As the aubergine wedges cook, remove them from the oil and drain on paper towels. 

  3. Heat the extra 2 tablespoons of oil in a heavy based saucepan along with the mustard and fenugreek seeds, onion crescents and green chili. Season with a good pinch of salt and cook until the onions just begin to colour and the seeds begin to pop, about 5-6 minutes. Make sure you don’t burn the seeds, the salt will help with this, as will stirring the mixture as it cooks. 

  4. Add the chopped tomatoes, ground cumin, smoked paprika, garam masala, and salt. Cook for a further 8 to 10 minutes until the tomatoes are cooked through and the sauce has thickened.  

  5. Add the eggplant and carefully stir through to reheat it. Remove from the heat and stir in the black honey. 

  6. Serve with jasmine rice and poppadom's. 


**If using fresh tomatoes, it is worth removing the skins before dicing them. This is not imperative, but it means your curry sauce will be smoother. Boil enough water in a pot to cover the tomatoes. Scour the skins on the top and bottom of each tomato with a knife and plunge them into the boiling water for a minute. Remove the tomatoes with a slotted spoon and place them into a colander to drain. When cool enough to handle, peel the skins off the tomatoes and chop them up. 

*Originally written and published for the Neudorf Black Garlic website 

Smokey Aubergine and Tomato Curry with Jasmine Rice
Smokey Aubergine and Tomato Curry with Jasmine Rice and Poppadoms

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Smoky Aubergine Curry
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