How to Prepare South Indian Spiced Aubergine Pickle

by Sunny Flemingo

This pickle goes well in a "thali" or serve it with a slice of cold meat. It also is great to have this when its cold outside - serve this as an accompaniment to freshly fried eggs.The aubergine presents a nice meaty texture.


  • 400 Grams Aubergine (Diced)
  • 2 Tablespoons Salt
  • 2 Sprig Curry Leaves
  • 2 Teaspoons Cumin Seeds
  • 2 Teaspoons Coriander Seeds
  • 1 Teaspoon Fenugreek Seeds
  • 1 Teaspoon Fennel Seeds
  • 2 Teaspoons Bllack Mustard Seeds
  • 2 Teaspoons Ground Turmeric
  • ½ Cups Sunflower Oil
  • 6 Cloves Garlic
  • 4 Centimeters Ginger
  • 2 Green Chillies
  • 1 Tablespoon Tamarind Paste
  • 1 Cup White Wine Vinegar
  • 5 Tablespoons Light Brown Sugar
  • 1 Large Red Onion (Diced)
  • Instructions

    Step 1

    Trim the aubergine and cut into 2cm cubes. Place in a colander & sprinkle with the salt. Set the colander over a bowl and leave the eggplants to degorge (release their bitter juices) for approx 1 hour

    Step 2

    Place the cumin, coriander, fenugreek, and fennel seeds in a dry frying pan. Toast over medium heat. When the seeds start to give off a lovely, toasty aroma, remove from the heat.

    Step 3

    Grind the spice finely and later add garlic and ginger to form a smooth paste.Meanwhile, wash the aubergine to remove salt. Dry them and mix thoroughly with ground turmeric. Set the aubergine aside.

    Step 4

    In a dry pot - set the flame to high. Add 2 tbsp of oil and once it is hot add the curry leaves. It will splutter and release its aroma. Remove the leaves in a clean and dry bowl.

    Step 5

    In the same pot fry the aubergine in small batches to get some color. Remove into the bowl with fried curry leaves.

    Step 6

    In the same pot heat some oil. Add in black mustard seeds. Once it has crackled add diced red onion. Fry untill golden brown.

    Step 7

    Once it has caramalised add diced green chillies.

    Step 8

    Now add the ground spice mixture, Cook for about 3-4 minutes.

    Step 9

    This will be thick and aromatic.

    Step 10

    Return the aubergine and curry leaves. Season with some salt.

    Step 11

    Add tamarind paste, vinegar & sugar. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a very gentle simmer, and continue to cook for another 30 minutes, until the pickle has thickened.

    Step 12

    Taste the pickle and adjust seasoning, if needed. Spoon into sterilized jars & seal immediately. Once the pickle is completely cold, store in a cool, dry place for at least 1 month before opening.