Brinjal (Aubergine) Pickle is probably my favourite pickle, it’s sweet and spicy and I could eat it by the spoonful….straight out of the jar! It’s great with curries but also with cheese and in ham sandwiches. It really reminds me of my childhood as my Nana use to make it; and hers was the best!
Unfortunately my Aunt couldn’t find this old recipe, and last year I had attempted a brinjal pickle but it just didn’t taste the same 😦
This time I wanted to make sure I got it right. My other Aunt told me about a Hairy Bikers recipe for brinjal so I took a look and decided to give it a go. Their recipe however only uses 2 aubergines, we have an abundance of aubergines, so many to get through so I doubled the spice ingredients and used 5 Aubergines.
As I was cooking and tasting I decided to add more sugar than the Hairy Bikers recipe, and it worked a treat. It tasted just like the jars back home which are so hard to get here in Spain, and my Aunt said even better!! Take a look at my recipe, this is a seriously tasty pickle…..
(This made 3 large Jars)
5 large Aubergines
8 tsp Fine Sea Salt
14 Tbsp Sunflower Oil (approx)
2 Medium Onions halved and sliced
50g Ginger Grated with skin
8 Garlic Cloves Grated
4 tsp Cumin seeds
4 tsp Fenugreek seeds
1 tbsp Mustard seeds
1 tbsp Coriander seeds
16 Curry Leaves
1 Cinnamon Stick
7 Dried Chillis (see photo mine where small)
2 tsp Ground Turmeric
600g Brown Sugar
600ml Malt Vinegar (it is important to use this, last year my mistake was that we only had white Spanish vinegar in the house so I used this and the colour and taste was just not rich enough)
Chop the aubergines into chunks and place onto trays on top of kitchen paper, then sprinkle over half of the salt evenly. Set aside for 30 minutes.
Wash the Aubergines and drain well.
In a deep-frying pan heat 2 tbsp oil, and in batches cook the aubergine chunks for 3/4 minutes until brown but not soft. Put 2 tbsp oil between each batch. After each batch place the browned aubergine in a deep pan and set aside.
Once you have browned all of the aubergines, in the same pan heat another tbsp of oil and place in the onions.
Stir this and cook until lightly browned.
Then add in the ginger and garlic and cook for another few minutes. Then add all of this onion mix to the pan with the aubergines.
Take a frying pan and place the spice seeds in: cumin, fenugreek, 2 tsp of the mustard seeds and the coriander. Dry fry these until you can smell an aroma.
Take off the heat and add in the chillis, curry leaves and cinnamon stick and toss this all together, let it cool a little.
I ground my spices in a blender, but you can use a pestle and mortar to bash these into a powder…
Next bash the remaining mustard seeds lightly, then add 2 tbsp of oil to the same frying pan used to dry roast the spice. Heat the oil then add the mustard seeds and cook for a few seconds, then add in the ground spices you have just made and the turmeric. Stir continually. Cook on low for a minute.
Scrape all of these spices into the pan with the aubergines and onions.
Turn the heat on this pan and add in the remaining salt, the sugar and the vinegar.
Bring to a boil then turn down and simmer for around an hour.
The colour should turn dark and the liquid should reduce.Place hot pickle into hot sterilised jars and seal well. Give it a go, it really is tasty.
Thanks to the Hairy Bikers for this great recipe!!xxx