Aubergine and pea curry

My kitchen is rarely without an aubergine, it is such a wonderful and versatile purple beast which would most certainly play a lead role in of the story of my family’s culinary history. This recipe is a Sodha family classic, one we have eaten and enjoyed for as long as I can remember.

Although you might want to preserve your demeanour in the supermarket, to find a good aubergine put your ear to it and give it a little knock.  You’re looking for a hollow sounding aubergine which is firm to touch and has a tight shiny skin and bright green hat.

Aubergine and Pea Curry (Ringan No Oro) 

Yields: enough for 4


  • 3 tablespoons rapeseed oil
  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tablespoon tomato puree
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 large aubergines, chopped into 3cm cubes
  • 50 g peas
  • 1 level teaspoon salt
  • ¾ teaspoon chilli powder
  • ½  teaspoon tumeric
  • 1 teaspoon sugar

In a wide bottomed and lidded pan, heat the oil over a medium heat. Once hot, add the cumin seeds, stir for 30 seconds, then add the chopped onion.

Cook the onions for around 10 minutes, until soft and translucent, but not brown then add the garlic and stir fry for a couple of minutes. Add the chopped tomatoes and tomato puree and cover with a lid. Leave to cook for 5 minutes then add the chilli powder, sugar, salt and turmeric.

Now add the aubergines, coating the pieces with the masala and pop the lid on the pan and allow the aubergine to cook through for around 10 minutes. You want them tender, soft and cooked with little to no water running from them – if they’re watery, they may need another few minutes but without the lid on.

When they’re cooked, add the peas and cook for a couple of minutes and take it off the heat. Cover the pan and leave to rest for around 10 minutes to allow all the flavours to mingle. Serve with fresh and hot chapattis.