Spicy Fried Aubergines

Inspired by my recent trip to the beautiful city of Istanbul, I present to you this timeless vegetarian recipe, simple yet appealing as an accompaniment to pilau rice.

Cooking Time: approx. 45 mins
Serves: 3-4


  • 1 large aubergine (eggplant)
  • 6 tbsp vegetable oil plus more as needed
  • 1 tsp garlic and ginger paste
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp chilli powder
  • salt to taste

How to cook

  1. Wash and pat dry the aubergine and slice into 1cm rounds.
  2. Score each slice lightly and rub in the garlic-ginger paste, salt and dry spices. Cover and set aside for 30 minutes to allow the spices to infuse into the flesh of the aubergine.
  3. Fry the slices of aubergine in two batches. In a wide frying pan gently heat 2 tbsp oil. Cook the first batch until golden brown on the top side (up to 10 mins). Turn over, adding another tbsp oil and cook the other side to ensure even cooking on both sides.  Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon to prevent braking and place on kitchen paper to drain off any excess oil.
  4. Add another 2 tbsp oil to the pan and repeat with the second batch using up the last tbsp oil as and when needed.
  5. Arrange on a serving dish and garnish with fresh coriander leaves. Serve warm.

Note: Aubergines absorb a lot of oil so you may need to use more oil depending on the type of pan you are cooking in. A heavier based pan (such as cast iron) will reduce cooking times due to better heat retenction and therfore likely to use less oil.

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