Eggplant Kasundi

eggplant kasundi || cityhippyfarmgirl

Four jars were sitting on the kitchen bench top, still piping hot and whispering to me of dishes that they could accompany.

Eggs on sourdough was a given.

Jazzed up fried rice a sure thing.

Hoppers seemed sensible,

and there might even be a little bit of roast chicken action.

Eggplant Kasundi was like that, a versatile little pickle that just brought its own little party to the dinner table. I had only discovered it last year, and celebrated the fact by slapping that stuff on everything that was mouth destined.

An easy, seasonal eggplant pickle that can be teamed up with pretty much anything.

How about you, have you any tiny food obsessions at the moment? Are you pickling anything from the season? What’s your favourite go to eggplant dish?

eggplant kasundi || cityhippyfarmgirl

I didn’t add chilli to this one as my smallest was keen on eating it by the spoonful but if you like your pickles on the feisty side I would say drop a few of your favourite hot reds in. 

Eggplant Kasundi

12 finger eggplants (brinjals)

5 tomatoes

2 medium onions

1 head of garlic

1 knob of fresh ginger

1 1/2 tbsp mustard seeds

1 1/2 tbsp cumin

1 1/2 tbsp coriander

4 tbsp vegetable oil

1 1/2 cups raw sugar

250 mls apple cider vinegar

2 tsp salt

2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

In a large pot add the ginger, garlic, onion and oil. Cook it up, stirring continuously over a medium heat, add your spices and continue to stir until it smells amazing. Add diced eggplants and diced fresh tomatoes. Continue stirring intermittently, pop the lid on and let the mixture cook down a little further, (you want the eggplant to be soft and cooked through.) Add the apple cider vinegar, balsamic vinegar, sugar and salt, continue cooking (stirring occasionally) over a low heat for approximately 45 minutes or until mixture thickens and comes together.

Pour hot mixture into sterilised jars.

 

 

 

 

red food dye? I don’t think so

He was scampering that was for sure. Up and down the hall with an obvious focus to those little feet. He caught me watching him and seemed to push away the raised eyebrow look and what are you up to question on my lips. I couldn’t hear anything that I shouldn’t be and he really was quite busy. So I left him to it. Back and forth, back and forth. Scurrying like a little bug, taking huge bundles 4 times his body size and wrangling it to his chosen destination.

Little Monkey was building a castle. He called out, declaring he was ready now, and in I went to inspect the wall building. Foundations looked a little shonky, brick work was a little sloppy, but there he was sitting on top of his castle, pleased as a 3 year old would be…sitting on top of his castle. Every cushion, pillow, blanket, soft anything had been dragged in and utilised. Just perfect for a mama to make a flying leap on to….

Now if you are the kind of person that likes looking into what you are eating or what your kids maybe eating, you may have looked up red food dye before. You may have also heard, that just like my little cushion carrying bug of a son, red food dye can be made from a certain bug… Or it could also be made from a coal tar derivative. Either way, these days I don’t particularly want to ingest anything that is fire engine red unless there is a really good reason to.

So with that in mind I was mighty annoyed to get a jar of tandoori paste home a while back. Only to find out, that one of the main ingredients was red food dye!

Not a tomato ingredient in there. All that lovely red was thanks to some good old red food dye. I was annoyed, as I would never normally buy a jar like this but was feeling generous as I had been at some great farmers markets and was seduced by all the lovely food stuffs around me… the seduction however, had not carried over to the tandoori paste I had just bought home.

Surely I could make something that wouldn’t give me the heebie-jeebies just looking at the colour?

Let’s give it a crack…

Tandoori Paste

In a pan add

a couple of slurps of vegetable oil

diced onion, knob of ginger, and a couple of cloves of garlic

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp coriander

1 tsp turmeric

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp yellow mustard seeds

2 tbls tomato paste

salt to taste

chilli to taste

fry it all off for a couple of minutes, until fragrant. Then whizz to a smooth paste with a hand held mixer.

*******

Now authentic? Perhaps not, but I think a whole more so than a jar full of red food dye, and salt.

 I cooked this up with the obligatory chicken and yogurt dish, but I also had some left over and sourdough on the go. So Tandoori Flat Bread it was.

Just the thing to go and snack on while sitting on top of a castle.

Spiced Indian Potatoes- Frugal Friday

Spiced Indian Potatoes

in a pan take

a good double slurp of vegetable oil

pop in

1 diced onion

2 tps cumin

2 tps coriander

2 tps tumeric

(if you have them 2 tps mustard seed, black or brown)

1 knob of diced fresh ginger

2 cloves of diced garlic

gently cook all these ingredients, letting the spices waft around the kitchen tantalizing your taste buds

Now pop in 4 roughly cubed medium sized potatoes, (you can partly cook them in the microwave beforehand just to make the process quicker. Only partly cooked though, you don’t want mush.) Stir it round, spices and onions coating the potatoes. Done when the potatoes are soft when pierced through.

Serve with a dollop of natural yoghurt, and a seasonal salad.

Easy dinner for Frugal Friday.