Indian Chicken-Eggplant Curry

Water/broth version.

This particular base curry recipe is the one I keep coming back to again and again.  One can substitute tomato paste or sauce in the gravy, rather than whole tomatoes, but I prefer the fresh tomatoes in my curry. This is easy to make and incredibly delicious!  This dish is OK for Induction and is also suitable for Primal diners.  Paleo followers need to use coconut milk instead of cream, but coconut milk is GREAT in Indian curries!  The sky’s the limit on what vegetables or meat you use in this basic curry recipe.

Cream-based version


1 T. cumin seed (or 2 tsp. seed + 1 tsp. ground)

2 T. each olive oil and butter (or any combination of same)

3 oz. sliced onion

2 deboned 7-8 oz. chicken breasts, cut into 1-1½” chunks

¼ tsp. salt

¼-½  tsp. cayenne pepper  (use ½ tsp. only if you like it HOT)

1 tsp. ground cumin

½ T. minced fresh ginger

½ tsp. ground turmeric

1 T. my homemade Garam Masala 

4 T. fresh cilantro, chopped

1½ c. chicken broth

2 Roma tomatoes (3″) , cut into 1″ cubes (OR use 1 Tbsp. tomato paste)

10 oz. eggplant, cut into 1½” large cubes

1 jalapeno, seeded and slivered very thin

¼ c. heavy cream (Paleo-Primal folks should use coconut milk)

VARIATION:  Omit cream or coconut milk in the sauce and have what is called a “water-based” curry gravy. 

DIRECTIONS:  In a dry non-stick skillet or wok, dry roast the whole cumin seed, stirring, just until they become fragrant but not burned (about 1-2 minutes).  Add olive oil, butter and onions & saute a few minutes.  Add chicken, turmeric and continue to saute until chicken is opaque.  Add all remaining ingredients except heavy cream (if using). Simmer covered on lowest heat about 30 minutes until tomatoes are tender but not falling totally apart.  Add heavy cream (if using) and continue to simmer 5-10 minutes longer.  If desired, slightly thicken with a few successive, light dustings of xanthan gum or glucomannan powder, whisking or stirring vigorously between additions to allow it to “develop/thicken”.

Optional:  serve over steamed cauliflower or basmati rice for non-low-carb dinner guests.

NUTRITIONAL INFO: Serves 5, each serving contains: (includes cream, but not suggested cauliflower or rice “bed”.

425 cals, 34.3g fat, 7.7g carbs, 2.64g fiber, 5.06g NET CARBS, 21g protein, 404mg sodium


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