Curry doesn’t have to be so hot that it makes you reach for the jug of water and this mild Aubergine Masala has just enough spice to notice it, but not so much to ruin it. It’s rich and creamy, veggie packed and all made in the Crock Pot to save you time and effort.
Aubergine and I have a bit of a strange relationship, as I don’t love it in all things, so I wouldn’t say that I was its biggest fan. But, there are two things that I adore it in and that’s babaganoush (duh!) and curry. It’s a great vegetarian way to bulk out a curry and add a ton of flavour, which is why this aubergine Masala was a big hit with us.
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We are trying to cut down to just 2 meat meals a week for health and environmental reasons, so that means we are discovering some incredible new vegetarian and vegan meals that don’t miss the meat. Aubergine has such a meaty texture, that it’s always a favourite in vegetarian meals.
You guys know how much of a fan I am of slow cooking (I have a slow cooker book coming out autumn next year), but I haven’t talked much about slow cookers themselves. When Crock-Pot challenged us to take part in Crocktober (oh how we love a pun) and slow down by swapping one regular meal a week for the month of October with a slow cooked meal using a Crock-Pot, we jumped at the chance. Who doesn’t want to use their slow cooker more?
The brilliant thing about a slow cooker is that you throw all the ingredients in, leave it for a couple of hours and then when you come back you’ll have a delicious meal waiting for you – leaving you free to do something else instead in the cooking time, like head to the gym or spend time with friends and family. That’s a reminder to myself – I am joining the gym this week!
We actually went a step beyond the challenge and have had 3 slow cooker meals this week, so it has freed up loads of time for us to go out and explore our new area. We have been on long walks, played on the swings and enjoyed plenty of coffee and cake family dates. Couldn’t have done all that if we had spent loads of time cooking. The Crock-Pot really is a must for busy families – Make it Fast, Cook it Slow.
What saved us even more time was that we didn’t have to come up with the recipes ourselves, as they were created by Great British Menu chef, Neil Rankin and they were all delicious. We chose to share this Aubergine Masala recipe with you first, and we have one for the meat eaters at the end of the month, so look out for that. Slow cooking is so much more than just stews and casseroles, and Neil’s recipes have really highlighted that. The possibilities are endless when it comes to slow cookers and you can use your Crock-Pot to make restaurant-ready delights such as Pork Belly and Mexican enchiladas. Why not try Asian-style lamb? Or Malaysian curry? Or desserts such as Chocolate lava pudding or crème brûlée. So much you can do!
Crock-Pot is the original slow cooker. Launched in North America in 1971, Crock-Pot has been trusted with meal times ever since. For over 40 years Crock-Pot has led the way in electrical one-pot cooking as more and more people across the world embrace slow cooking as the convenient way to create hearty, flavoursome family meals. It’s one pot, but with endless possibilities.
We used the Crock-Pot 4.5L DuraCeramic Sauté Slow Cooker and it represents a step-change for the industry, introducing a multi-purpose aluminium pot that can be used on all hob types, and finished with a revolutionary DuraCeramic coating that is free of PFOA and PTFE non-stick chemicals, giving it four times the durability of standard products. Being able to use it on the hob first is amazing, as it really is all done in one pan.
Now, this isn’t the lowest calorie curry as it uses butter and cream, but sometimes you just need the real deal and once in a while there is nothing wrong with that. This is also so much healthier than ordering takeaway, where you would have over double the butter and cream in it. Remember, it’s what you do most of the time that matters, not what you do once in a while.
Curry doesn't have to be so hot you can't taste it. This mild Aubergine Masala has just enough spice to notice, but not so much to ruin it.
- 30 ml vegetable oil or clarified butter
- 2 small or one large aubergine, diced
- 3 onions, sliced
- 2 medium fresh tomato, quartered
- ½ tsp fresh green chilli, finely chopped
- ½ tsp salt (or to taste)
- ½ tsp sugar
- 1 tsp red chilli powder
- ¼ tsp turmeric powder
- 1/2 tsp cumin powder
- 1 tsp dried fenugreek leaves
- 1 tsp ginger paste
- 1 tsp garlic paste
- 1 tbsp fresh coriander, chopped
- 6 skinned almonds, ground to a paste with a little water
- 200 ml tomato passata
- 200 ml water
- 30 g butter
- 30 ml single cream
- Sliced ginger and fresh coriander, to serve
Set your crock pot to high Recommended (for 2-3 hour cooking) or low (for 4-6)
Remove the inner aluminium pot of the Crock-Pot and place on the hob. Add the onions and fry in a little oil. Add the spices and fry for 3 mins then add the aubergine and all the tomatoes.
When they are hot transfer to the Crock-Pot add the rest of the ingredients apart from the cream and butter. Cook down until the oil begins to separate and finish with the butter and cream and salt to taste. (If liked, you can puree about half the mixture and mix together).
Serve with some basmati rice and your condiments of choice.
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~ This Aubergine Masala is a commissioned recipe for Crock-Pot ~
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