Recipe: Courgette and Aubergine curry
The Hemsley sisters share a simple one-pot supper that is warming for the soul
Serves four as a one-pot meal or six if served with a side dish
A simple one-pot supper that is warming for the soul. Red split lentils provide a quick-and-easy creamy base without the need to soak them. The coconut and ginger have incredible immune-boosting properties and, as usual, we like to sneak nourishing homemade broth into all of our cooking.
With this fragrant curry, the bone broth is purely for the nutritional value, so you can afford to skip it if you don’t have any to hand (but please don’t be tempted to use stock cubes).
200g bar of creamed coconut (use the oil for frying) or 2 tins of full-fat coconut milk, plus 2 tbsp coconut oil or ghee, for frying
2 large onions, diced
2 thumb-sized pieces of fresh root ginger (about 80g) – unpeeled if organic – grated
6 large garlic cloves, diced
200g red split lentils, rinsed (no need to soak these)
½−1 litre bone broth or water (use a little less if you are using coconut milk and depending on how thick or saucy you want your curry to be)
1 large aubergine, chopped into 1.5 cm pieces
4 large tomatoes, quartered
2 large courgettes, diced
Grated zest and juice of 1 unwaxed lime or lemon (avoid the bitter white pith)
2½–3 tsp tamari or 2 large pinches of sea salt
1 tsp maple syrup
A handful of roughly chopped fresh herbs, such as coriander, mint or basil (Thai basil if you can get it)
1. In a large wide pan, dry fry the peanuts or cashews for a few minutes to toast them, roughly chop and then set aside.
2. In the same pan, heat the coconut oil over a medium heat and fry the onion, ginger and garlic for 10 minutes until soft (don’t let the onion and garlic go brown).
3. Add the lentils, the roughly chopped coconut solids or coconut milk, and then most of the bone broth or water (a bit less if you’re using the coconut milk) and stir well. This should be enough liquid for the coconut solids to dissolve, but keep an eye on the liquid levels so that the lentils don’t stick and burn at the bottom.
4. After 6 minutes of cooking over a medium-high heat, add the aubergine and stir.
5. After a further 10 minutes, add the tomato, courgette, lime or lemon zest and the tamari or salt. Add more bone broth or water if you think your curry needs it.
6. After 6 minutes, turn off the heat and add the lime or lemon juice, the maple syrup and fresh herbs, then stir and taste. You might need a little more tamari or salt or lime or lemon juice to add sourness.
7. Top with the nuts and serve with watercress or your chosen side dish. If we’re having guests round, we like to serve our curry with some little bowls of extras (nuts, herbs, lemon or lime wedges and a bowl of tamari or sea salt) so everyone can help themselves to extra toppings.
Read more from Hemsley + Hemsley in our June issue, out now. Every month for the next year, the #360me team (featuring Hemsley + Hemsley) will be sharing their baby-steps approach to leading a healthier, happier life – tried, tested, researched and real-life-approved. It’s here for you – to enjoy, to inspire, to guide. Share your #360me journey with us at @psydirector and @psychologiesmagazine.
See Hemsley + Hemsley at the BBC Good Food Show Summer in the City (ExCel London) as a part of the BBC Good Food Eat Well Show on Saturday 21st May and Sunday 22nd May.