Day 163: Eggplant & Tomato Curry

It even LOOKS bland!

Tonight's eggplant dish was promising on paper, disappointing on a plate.

There was heat from the red pepper but still it was strangely flavorless despite a perfect eggplant and wonderful late-season local tomatoes.

It might well be one of those dishes that improves overnight. But I also likely made a mistake, adding a bag of carrot strips that had been tasteless fresh and then, to boot, in the frig for too long.

The good news about tonight's curry, however is the first use of a Foodie View-like spot at Ashbury's Aubergines, home to 3100 eggplant recipes. Check off the ingredients you have on hand in the search engine, voila, several recipes from which to choose. Now if only Epicurious were half as good at a search ...

Hands-on time: 25 minutes
Time to table: 60 minutes
Makes 7 cups

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 jalapeno, minced
1 tablespoon minced ginger (I was out, used a tablespoon of ginger juice)
2 teaspoons ground cumin (I was short on cumin so added a teaspoon of madras curry)
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
Sprinkle red pepper flakes
Salt (would definitely recommend this, think it might be another explanation for blandness)
2 cardamom seeds (recipe says these are optional)
1 pound eggplant, cubed
1 pound tomato, cubed
1 tablespoon tomato paste mixed with 1/2 cup water

15-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained

Heat a Dutch oven on MEDIUM HIGH. Add the olive oil and heat. Add the onion, garlic, jalapeno and ginger as they're prepped and cook until the onion begins to soften but not brown. Stir in the cumin, turmeric, red pepper flakes, salt and cardamom. Stir in the eggplant and tomato, then the tomato paste mixture. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to MEDIUM, cover and let simmer for about 20 minutes. Add chickpeas and cook for another 10 minutes or until chickpeas are heated through. Serve as a side dish (1/2 cup serving) or main dish (1 cup serving) over brown rice.

Per Half Cup: 85 Cal (20% from Fat, 16% from Protein, 64% from Carb); 4 g Protein; 2 g Tot Fat; 0 g Sat Fat; 14 g Carb; 4 g Fiber; 31 mg Calcium; 1 mg Iron; 255 mg Sodium; 0 mg Cholesterol, Weight Watchers 1 point

Per Cup: 171 Cal (20% from Fat, 16% from Protein, 64% from Carb); 7 g Protein; 4 g Tot Fat; 1 g Sat Fat; 29 g Carb; 9 g Fiber; 61 mg Calcium; 3 mg Iron; 510 mg Sodium; 0 mg Cholesterol, Weight Watchers 3 points

Alanna Kellogg
Alanna Kellogg

A Veggie Venture is home of "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.