How to make it

  • Put eggplant pieces in a colander, sprinkle with salt and let stand for 30 minutes.
  • Rinse, squeeze out any excess water and pat dry.
  • Puree the ginger and garlic with 1/3 of the tomato in a blender or food processor or finely chop.
  • Heat oil in large, heavy skillet and when hot, add eggplant in one layer and cook over medium heat until brown on both sides.
  • Transfer to a sieve over a bowl to let the excess oil drain off.
  • Reheat oil left in pan, or add more, and add the fennel and nigella seeds.
  • Cover and allow to pop for a few seconds. Add tomato and ginger mixture, and remaining ingredients, except the eggplant.
  • Cook, stirring, for 5 - 6 minutes, until the mixture becomes think and fairly smooth.
  • Add eggplant carefully, so the pieces stay whole, cover, and cook gently for 10 minutes.
  • Pour off any excess oil before serving.
  • May be served cold or gently warmed through.

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