Looking to enjoy a UK takeaway favourite from the comfort of your own home? Try our homemade Brinjal Bhaji with roasted aubergine mixed with a spicy onion tomato masala. This easy-to-follow Vegan aubergine bhaji recipe makes a perfect side or main, ready in just 30 minutes.
About this recipe – takeaway style Brinjal Bhaji
This recipe for homemade Brinjal Bhaji is incredibly easy, and once you try it, you’ll wonder why you ever bothered with takeaway. There’s no need for complicated cooking techniques – all you have to do is roast the aubergine and add it to a savoury onion and tomato masala. With only a few ingredients and just 30 minutes of your time, it’s perfect for a quick and easy dinner on weeknights or weekends.
To speed up the cooking process, I prefer to roast diced aubergine in the air fryer. It only takes 12 minutes, but if you’re roasting the aubergine in the oven, it will take about 22-25 minutes.
Instead of waiting for your next takeaway order, make this delicious Brinjal Bhaji and serve it with fresh flatbread or roti for a comforting meal.
When I have leftover Aubergine Bhaji, I spread it on naan bread, top it with mozzarella cheese, and air fry it for 4 minutes until the cheese has just melted. Serve it with a creamy raita, and it’s a brilliant aubergine bhaji pizza for fakeaway dinner, ready in under 10 minutes.
The ingredients are super simple and most of which you may already have at home. You will need
- Oil: Any neutral-flavoured oil, such as vegetable oil, sunflower oil, or olive oil, will work to cook the brinjal and onions.
- Aubergine (Brinjal / Eggplant): Diced aubergine is the main ingredient in this recipe.
- Onion: I like to use White onion, diced finely to add flavour and texture to the dish.
- Chilli: Green chilli and red chilli powder are used to add a spicy kick to the dish. You can adjust the amount of chilli according to your taste.
- Ginger Garlic: Use a mixture of fresh ginger and garlic to add a depth of flavor to the dish.
- Tomato Puree or Tomato Paste: Use Tomato puree or tomato paste to lend a tomatoey flavour to the dish. If you prefer a more saucy consistency, you can add a can of chopped tomatoes.
- Spices: For a flavourful curry base, use a combination of turmeric, cumin, coriander, chilli powder, and curry powder.
- Fresh Coriander: Fresh coriander gives the dish a pop of fresh flavour.
- Lemon: Squeeze half a lemon over the dish before serving to add a tangy flavour that complements the spices.
Roast Aubergine in the Air fryer
To prepare the roasted aubergine for Brinjal Bhaji, begin by preheating the air fryer for 4-5 minutes. Then, place the diced aubergine on a baking tray and toss it with oil and turmeric. Roast the aubergine in the air fryer for 12 minutes, or until the flesh is soft and tender with crispy edges.
If you don’t have an air fryer, you can still roast the aubergine in the oven. Preheat the oven to 190 C, then place the diced aubergine on a tray and roast it for 25-30 minutes or until the flesh is soft and tender with crispy edges.
PS– I have used Instant Vortex Plus Versazone Air fryer which has a capacity of 8.5l for roasting the aubergine. Picture below.
How to make Brinjal Bhaji step by step?
While the aubergine is cooking, heat oil in a pan and add onion, green chilli, ginger, and garlic. Fry until the onions are soft and translucent.
Next, add spices, tomato paste, salt, and water to the pan and stir. Cover and cook the masala until it combines well.
Now, add the roasted aubergine and water to the masala and cook for another 3-4 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed.
Finally, finish the dish with a squeeze of lemon juice and a garnish of fresh coriander. Enjoy your homemade Aubergine Bhaji!
Brinjal Bhaji and Baingan Bharta
Brinjal Bhaji and Baingan Bharta are two Indian dishes that use aubergine (eggplant) as their main ingredient, but they differ in their preparation and flavour. Both dishes offer a delicious way to enjoy aubergine in Indian cuisine.
Brinjal Bhaji curry involves dicing the aubergine, roasting it, and then cooking it with a flavourful onion tomato masala. On the other hand, Baingan Bharta calls for roasting the whole aubergine, peeling it, mashing it, and then adding it to the masala.
It’s worth noting that some recipes for Brinjal Bhaji may use mashed aubergine, which actually makes it Baingan Bharta. To create an authentic Brinjal Bhaji, stick to the diced and roasted aubergine method.
Onion Bhaji and Brinjal Bhaji
Onion Bhaji and Brinjal Bhaji are two popular dishes in Indian cuisine, but they differ in taste, texture, and presentation.
- Onion Bhaji, also known as Bhajjee, is a crispy appetizer made with onions, gram flour and spices. It is served hot with chutneys or dips, making it a popular snack or appetizer in Indian cuisine.
- Brinjal Bhaji, on the other hand, is a side dish made with brinjals (aubergine), spices, and a semi-gravy consistency. It is often served as part of a main course and pairs well with fresh roti or other Indian breads.
What to serve it with?
- Serve Brinjal Bhaji with Homemade naan bread, Yogurt flatbread, or Fresh chapati.
- For a full Indian meal, serve Aubergine Bhaji with crispy onion bhaji, yellow pilau rice, tarka dal,and vegetable raita.
- Add some pickles, chutneys or salad on the side, such as mango chutney, lime pickle, green chutney, cold Indian onion chutney or Kachumber salad.
Store any leftover Indian Aubergine curry in an air tight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Can I freeze Brinjal Bhaji?
Yes, you can freeze Brinjal Bhaji. Allow it to cool down completely before transferring it to an airtight container. Label the container and freeze it up to 3 months.
To thaw frozen Aubergine Bhaji curry, transfer the container from the freezer to the refrigerator and let it defrost overnight. Once it is completely thawed, you can reheat it on the stove or in the microwave.
If you love this recipe, you will also love
30 minutes Takeaway style Brinjal Bhaji recipe below
For roasting the Aubergine
- 1½ tbsp Sunflower oil
- 400 g Aubergine (Brinjal) diced
- ½ tsp Ground Turmeric
Onion Tomato Masala
- 1½ tbsp Sunflower oil
- 170 g White onion (1 medium) diced
- 1 Green Chilli sliced
- 2 cloves Garlic diced
- 5 cm Ginger juliennes
- 60 g Tomato Puree (3 Tbsp)
- 1 cup Water + 1/2 cup if needed
- ½ tsp Ground Turmeric
- 1 tsp Ground Cumin
- 1 tsp Ground Coriander
- ½ tsp Chilli Powder
- 1 tsp Madras Curry Powder or Garam masala
- Salt to taste
- 3 Tbsp Coriander leaves
- ½ Lemon Juice
Roast Aubergine in Air fryer/ Oven
- Preheat the air fryer for 4 minutes.
- Toss diced aubergine with oil and turmeric, then place it on a baking tray.1½ tbsp Sunflower oil, 400 g Aubergine (Brinjal), ½ tsp Ground Turmeric
- Transfer the baking tray inside the air fryer basket and roast the aubergine in the air fryer for 12-13 minutes until soft and tender with crispy edges.
- If using an oven, preheat it to 190 C. Roast the diced aubergine for 25-30 minutes or until you have soft and tender flesh with crispy edges.
How to make Aubergine Bhaji
- In a pan, heat oil and add onion, green chilli, ginger, and garlic. Fry until onions are soft and translucent (about 5-6 minutes).1½ tbsp Sunflower oil, 170 g White onion (1 medium), 1 Green Chilli, 2 cloves Garlic, 5 cm Ginger
- Add tomato puree, spices, salt, and water to the pan. Stir, cover, and cook the masala for 4 minutes.60 g Tomato Puree (3 Tbsp), ½ tsp Ground Turmeric, 1 tsp Ground Cumin, 1 tsp Ground Coriander, ½ tsp Chilli Powder, 1 tsp Madras Curry Powder, Salt to taste, 1 cup Water
- Add the roasted aubergine and water to the masala. Stir. Cover and cook for another 3 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed.400 g Aubergine (Brinjal), 1 cup Water
- Squeeze lemon juice over the dish and garnish with fresh coriander.½ Lemon Juice, 3 Tbsp Coriander leaves
- Serve and enjoy your homemade Brinjal Bhaji!