Stuffed eggplant is a popular Indian curry with many variations. I am mostly familiar with two versions of stuffed eggplants – one is my Mom-in-law’s recipe which involves stuffing eggplants with chickpea flour and spices, the other is a South Indian Tamil version in which eggplants are stuffed with lentils, shredded coconut and spices. In this new recipe however I thought I would stuff the eggplants with a spicy almond meal and I tell you folks, this has to be the easiest and my new favorite stuffed eggplant curry!
I’ve been wanting to try stuffed eggplant with almond flour for a while but finding the right eggplants for this dish is what held me back. This type of stuffed eggplant only works well with small baby eggplants and these eggplants are usually found at Asian markets which is a detour for me. But I finally stopped by and picked up a few gorgeous baby eggplants just for this stuffed eggplant curry.
For this recipe I made a mix of almond meal, finely cut onions, a littlegarlic, and a few fragrant spices. Mix all these ingredients together and stuff them inside little eggplants. Steam the eggplants until they are tender, then gently take them out and lightly pan-fry to give them a shiny crispy coating. These stuffed eggplant tastes wonderful with chapatis, tortillas and with daal and rice.
Stuffed Eggplants with Spicy Almond Meal
- 6-8 Japanese eggplants or 20 small eggplants.
- 1 cup almond meal or almond flour
- 1 small shallot finely chopped
- 1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
- 2 garlic cloves finely chopped
- 1 tsp cumin powder
- 1 tsp coriander powder
- 1/2 tsp chili powder (optional)
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- 1/2 tsp asafetida
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- Make the stuffing: Mix almond flour with cumin powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder, asafetida, chili powder, and salt. Next add onions, garlic and cilantro and mix-in. Add 1 tbsp oil to help bind the stuffing into a coarse slightly moist stuffing.
- Stuff the eggplant: Make slits in the eggplants half way through making sure not to cut the eggplant in half. Stuff the eggplants with almond meal, it’s okay if they are not perfectly stuffed and a little messy.
- Steam the eggplant: Place the stuffed eggplants in a steamer and steam for 10 minutes until eggplants are tender.
- Temper the eggplant. Once the eggplants are steamed get ready to temper them with mustard seeds. In a large flat saucepan heat 2 tbsp oil. Add mustard seeds and let them splutter. Make sure to cover pot to prevent the seeds from popping all over the counter. Next add cumin seeds and toast for 2-3 seconds. Immediately add the soft eggplant evenly in the pan. Gently cook in oil for a few minutes until all the eggplant is coated in oil and slightly browned and crisp. The eggplant may fall apart as it is frying, but the flavor will be outstanding.
- Turn the stove off. Squeeze juice of 1 lemon and garnish with chopped cilantro before serving.