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For the 3rd and last of the marathon under the theme “Cooking with Onions“, I wanted to make an Indian dish. Onions are quintessential ingredient in Indian cooking, so I wanted to make a dish that utilizes onions in a very traditional way.

Eggplant Curry with Onion Masala

Ulli Karam (Ulli=Onion, Karam=Red chili or hot spicy in Telugu) is a great base for a number of dishes. A paste of either raw or cooked onions and red chili powder is used as a spread in dosas, mixed with rice or like did today cooked with a veggie. Eggplant (vankaya), Potato (bangaladumpa), Bittergourd (kakarakaya), Ridgegourd (beerakaya), basically any veggie can be used to make a ulli karam kura. Being an eggplant lover, I decided make my curry with eggplant.

Eggplant Curry with Onion Masala

Baby eggplants would be perfect, but I only had the long slender Japanese eggplants in the fridge. So I chopped them into chunks and cooked them in the onion gravy. The final dish was so delicious with the melt in your texture of the eggplant complemented with the slightly sweet, but still spicy, onion gravy.

Eggplant Curry with Onion Masala
Print Recipe
Vankaya Ulli Karam Kura Yum
For the 3rd and last of the marathon under the theme "Cooking with Onions", I wanted to make an Indian dish. Onions are quintessential ingredient in Indian cooking, so I wanted to make a dish that utilizes onions in a very traditional way.
Vankaya Ulli Karam Kura
Course side dish
Cuisine andhra
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings
serving
Ingredients
  • 2 Red Onions - medium, chopped
  • 3 Eggplant medium Japanese (vankaya/ brinjal) (chopped into 3" chunks -- make a 'X' slit on each of the chunks, so the eggplants are cooked through)*
  • 1 - 2 tsps chili powder Red (or as per taste, I used only 1tsp for a mild curry, use more if you can handle some heat)
  • 2 tsp Tamarind pulp
  • 1 Cinnamon " stick
  • 2 tsps Jeera Shah - divided
  • 4 Cloves
  • 6 - 8 Curry leaves
  • to taste Salt
  • 2 tbsps Cilantro - finely chopped, for garnish
Course side dish
Cuisine andhra
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings
serving
Ingredients
  • 2 Red Onions - medium, chopped
  • 3 Eggplant medium Japanese (vankaya/ brinjal) (chopped into 3" chunks -- make a 'X' slit on each of the chunks, so the eggplants are cooked through)*
  • 1 - 2 tsps chili powder Red (or as per taste, I used only 1tsp for a mild curry, use more if you can handle some heat)
  • 2 tsp Tamarind pulp
  • 1 Cinnamon " stick
  • 2 tsps Jeera Shah - divided
  • 4 Cloves
  • 6 - 8 Curry leaves
  • to taste Salt
  • 2 tbsps Cilantro - finely chopped, for garnish
Vankaya Ulli Karam Kura
Instructions
  1. Heat 2tsp oil in a saute pan; add the cinnamon stick, 1tsp shah jeera, cloves and the chopped onions. Cook on medium flame until onions turn translucent and slightly browned around the edges, about 6-8 minutes. Remove into a plate to cool. Once it's slightly cooled, grind into a smooth paste along with salt, red chili powder and tamarind paste.
  2. In the same pan, heat 1tbsp oil and add 1tsp shah jeera and curry leaves. Next add the eggplants; cover and cook on medium-low flame until almost cooked through.
  3. Add the onion paste and gently mix it in with the veggies. Cover and cook until eggplant is completely cooked through. Add some water if the mixture looks dried out. Check the seasonings and adjust accordingly.
  4. Garnish with chopped cilantro and serve hot with rice or roti.
Recipe Notes

Eggplant Curry with Onion Masala

I served this spicy curry with a cooling tomato majjiga pulusu (tomato kadhi) and white rice for a filling meal.

Eggplant Curry with Onion Masala

Lets check out what my fellow marathoners have cooked up today for BM# 20.

* If using Indian or Thai style baby eggplants, use may be 8-10 of them.

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19 thoughts on “Vankaya Ulli Karam Kura (Eggplant Curry with Onion Masala)”

  1. looks real yum..n glad that we can make this dish with other veggies…book marked!..lovely clicks, like the way you have composed the picture.

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