We’ve done the Thai curries. We’ve done them darned good. But we were ready for a change. So when we saw this vegetable Indian curry in Bon Appetit, we had to try it.
Unfortunately, our Okra went bad before we made it. We have never had Okra, and were both looking forward to it. We were not, however, looking forward to moldy okra. Maybe next time.
We’d also peel the eggplant next time, and try cooking it differently. The skin was tough and the flesh was too bitter. We ended up picking out all the pieces of eggplant and eating the rest of it. If anyone here has a tip for non-bitter eggplant, please share!
If you do choose to make this, chances are you’ll need to run down to your friendly neighborhood international food store to get many of the ingredients. We somehow managed to find curry leaves (which oddly smell like burnt rubber), used what we needed and froze the rest for next time. The Black Mustard and Fenugreek you’ll also need to find. If you want to save yourself some time, pick up some “ghee”, which is basically browned clarified butter. If not, you’ll have to clarify your own, simply by melting the butter and scooping off all the white solids that rise to the top and sink to the bottom.
If I haven’t scared you with the complexity of this recipe yet… you really should try it! It’s darned good (sans bitter eggplant, of course!)
Coconut Vegetable Curry
Makes 6 servings. Recipe from Bon Appetit.
5 tablespoons Clarified Butter, divided
12 pearl onions, blanched 1 minute, peeled
10 fresh okra pods
6 Indian eggplants (each about 3 inches long) or 4 Asian eggplants, trimmed, each quartered lengthwise 2 large carrots (about 10 ounces), peeled, cut on diagonal into 1/4-inch-thick ovals
1 1/2 pounds tomatoes, cored, cubed
5 tablespoons Clarified Butter
1 pound white onions, chopped
1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger
1 large garlic clove, chopped
2 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh or frozen curry leaves* (about 16 leaves)
1 1/2 teaspoons black mustard seeds**
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon fenugreek seeds***
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt 3 1/2 cups canned unsweetened coconut milk (preferably organic)
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
Heat 1 tablespoon butter in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions; sautÃ© until golden, about 2 minutes. Reduce heat to low and sautÃ© until onions are just tender, about 8 minutes. Transfer onions to bowl. Heat 1 tablespoon butter in same skillet over medium-high heat. Add okra; sautÃ© until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. Add okra to bowl with onions. Heat 1 tablespoon butter in same skillet over medium-high heat. Add eggplants; sprinkle with salt and pepper. SautÃ© eggplants until brown on cut surfaces and just tender, about 6 minutes. Add eggplant to onions. Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter in same skillet. Add carrots. SautÃ© until carrots begin to soften, about 3 minutes. Add tomatoes and stir to blend; add to vegetable mixture in bowl. Reserve skillet for sauce.
Heat butter in reserved skillet over medium-high heat. Add chopped onions and sautÃ© until golden, about 14 minutes. Reduce heat to medium. Add ginger and garlic; sautÃ© 1 minute. Add curry leaves, mustard seeds, turmeric, fenugreek, and cayenne; sautÃ© 1 minute. Add vegetable mixture and 1Â§ teaspoons salt. Add coconut milk and bring to simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer uncovered until vegetables are just tender, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes. Mix in lime juice. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Transfer curry to bowl. Serve over basmati rice.