What is Tikka Masala?
Tikka Masala is the most famous Indian curry. It was invented in the United Kingdom in order to meet a customer's demand. The original recipe was created as Chicken Tikka Masala. However, the vegetarian version was adapted later with Paneer Tikka Masala.
Vegan food has been trending lately. Cauliflower Tikka Masala, Tofu Tikka Masala, and a few times, Eggplant Tikka Masala.
Heavy cream and yoghurt are used in making tikka masala, but for a vegan alternative, coconut yoghurt or yoghurt of your choice and coconut milk can be used.
Tikka means pieces of meat, and masala means a wonderful blend of aromatic spices. This dish is delectable, delicious, and finger-licking good.
Why Eggplant Tikka Masala?
Eggplant is the most versatile vegetable, however, it is highly underrated. The texture of eggplant is like a sponge. It soaks the flavours amazingly, hence, it is considered wonderful to go with any delectable curry.
I love eggplant, and not many people think of eggplant when making vegan tikka masala sauce.
How Can We Make Eggplant Tikka Masala?
We make this in two steps-
1- The first step is to marinate the eggplant and bake it in the oven. Cut the eggplant in big cubes and marinate with yoghurt, ginger-garlic paste, turmeric powder, red chilli powder, salt, and gram flour. Then, bake in the oven for 20- 25 minutes at 400 F till looks light crispy.
2- The second step is to make gravy. Take a pan and sauté onions, ginger-garlic paste, coriander powder, turmeric powder, and red chilli powder. When the masala is done, add tomato puree and cream. Cinnamon and cardamom are also used as whole spices.
What Can We Serve With Eggplant Tikka Masala?
It goes well with rice and any type of Indian bread. You can try-
Baked Amritsari Paneer Kulcha,
Can We Store Eggplant Tikka Masala?
I always make tikka masala sauce in bulk and keep it in the fridge in individual boxes. The making of curry is always easy with that.
You can store Eggplant Tikka Masala in the fridge for 2-3 days. Be sure to reheat it before serving. Then, sprinkle some fresh cilantro leaves, and enjoy!
Eggplant Tikka Masala
For Marinating the Eggplant and Baking it.
- 2 Cups Big Cubes of eggplant.
- ⅛ Cup Thick Yoghurt
- 1 Tbsp Gram Flour
- 1 Tsp Ginger- Garlic Paste
- ½ Tsp Red Chilli Powder
- ½ Tsp Coriander Powder
- ¼ Tsp Garam Masala powder
- ½ Tsp Turmeric Powder
- 1 Tsp Oil of your choice
For Tikka Masala Sauce
- 1 Medium Onion (chopped finely)
- 1 8 OZ Tomato puree
- 1 Tbsp Ginger Garlic Paste
- 1 Tsp Kashmiri Chilli Powder
- 1 Tsp Turmeric Powder
- 1 Tsp Coriander Powder
- 1 Tsp Kasoori Methi /Dry Fenu greek leaves
- ½ Cup Heavy Cream /Coconut Milk for vegan option.
- 1 Tbsp Oil of your choice
- Salt ,according to your taste.
- 1 Inch Cinnamon Sticks.
- 2 Big Cardamom
- 1 Tbsp Fresh cilantro leaves.
- Mix eggplant cubes ,yoghurt gram flour ,ginger garlic paste ,turmeric powder, coriander powder ,red chilli powder ,oil and just a little salt together.
- Mix everything together so that eggplant is coated nicely .Let it marinate in the fridge for 20-30 minutes. Pre heat the oven on 400 F after 15 minutes.
- Prepare a baking tray with parchment paper and and arrange eggplants evenly on it .Mostly baked goods does not stick to the eggplant still if you are not sure ,brush it with little oil.
- Bake eggplant cubes on 400 f for around 30 minutes or till they look little crisp .
- Remove them in a plate after they are done .Keep it on a counter.
Making of tikka masala gravy
- Take a pan. Add oil to it.
- Once its hot add Cinnamon and Cardamom. Stir it once.
- Add chopped onion to it .Saute it on low /medium flame.
- Add ginger garlic paste and little salt at this time ,to expedite the process of sauteing the spices.
- After 3-4 minute onion will look soft mushy and transparent .
- Add turmeric powder ,coriander powder ,red chilli powder and saute it nicely for 2 minute on low/medium flame .In Indian cooking this part is really important.
- Add tomato puree to it .stir it nicely and let it cook for 4-5 minute on slow flame .Masala /Spices will release the oil after its done .
- Add baked eggplants in the gravy .Mix it properly without breaking .
- Add cream /Coconut milk at this time .Mix it nicely .
- Taste the gravy ,if it needs little salt ,add just a little ,This curry is special because of sweetness of cream and tomato.
- Consistency of curry should not be runny ,it should be thick .Still if yu need to thin it a little add just a little water to it .
- Stir it once ,let it cook on low flame for 1-2 minute.
- Remove it in a serving bowl .
Recipes you may want to Check,
Instant Pot Dal Makhani (Healthy Version of Traditional Dal Makhani)
How far ahead of time can you marinate the eggplant?
20-30 minutes is more then enough.