Eggplant And Pumpkin/Butternut Squash Curry

After a visit to the pumpkin patch this fall, we had pumpkin-this and pumpkin-that over the weeks that followed. Personally, we both are not great fans of pumpkin. They are little too sweet for our taste. But the little orange ones were too cute to pass. To compensate for their sweetness, I try cooking winter squash like pumpkin or acorn in a spicy gravy or a creamy sauce. After making lasagna, ravioli, sambar, kootu with the squash, I still had some to finish off. In a whim, I paired it with a globe eggplant that was lying in the refrigerator and made a curry to go with rotis. The results were more than satisfactory.

Now that fall is gone, I chose butternut squash to make this curry again. It was just as delicious as the original recipe. The smoky eggplant and the sweet squash were quite a duo. Made with lots of onion, tomato and readymade spices, this is quite an easy and forgiving recipe. I have made this with both sambar powder and curry powder. With either of these spice mixtures, the curry turned out to be great. I even added a handful of black chickpeas(not in the picture), which hit right on spot. The recipe given below serves four. But make extra, leftovers are even better.


Eggplant – 3 cups, small dice
Pumpkin or Butternut squash – 2 cups, small dice
Cumin seeds – 1 tbsp
Fennel seeds – 1 tsp
Onion – 1 big or 2 small, diced
Tomato – 3, diced
Green chilli – 1, chopped
Fenugreek seeds – ¼ tsp
Black chickpeas – ¾ cup, soaked and cooked (optional)
Sambar masala or Curry powder or Coriander powder+Red chilli powder+Turmeric powder – 2 tbsp
Ground black pepper – ¼ tsp
Oil – 3 tbsp
Cilantro – ½ cup, chopped
Mint – 1 tbsp, chopped


In a big skillet heat a tbsp of oil and roast eggplant on a medium flame. Eggplant should be slightly roasted and softened. Remove from the skillet and set aside. Similarly, cook pumpkin/butternut squash in a tbsp of oil until done. Remove and set aside.

Heat remaining oil, roast cumin and fennel seeds, and sauté onions for about 3 minutes. Add chopped chilli, tomato, fenugreek seeds, black chickpeas and salt and cook over a medium heat for 5-7 minutes. The tomatoes should turn soft and mushy. Add sambar powder (or your preferred seasoning), cooked eggplant and pumpkin/squash cubes, and cook covered for 10 minutes. Sambar powder should loose its raw smell and everything in the curry should come together. Add black pepper, check seasoning and serve garnished with cilantro and mint. Serve with any flat bread.

Eggplant And Pumpkin Curry

Eggplant and squash curry served with naan and raita.

This is my entry to Fresh Produce of the Month, hosted by Marta of An Italian in the US.


Mansi said...

looks good Suganya:) but that's a combo I wouldn't easily go for:) you might have to let me taste it to convince me!!

Mythreyee said...

Excellent and a rare combo. Looks delicious.

Anonymous said...

Butternut squash? hmmm... interesting one there :)

As usual great photography.

evolvingtastes said...

A similar combi used to be available in the cafeteria (huh!) of a prior workplace - they also had cauliflower and potatoes, and nuts and raisins along with the things you mentioned. Sounds like hodgepodge, but it was pretty good for a vegetarian main dish.

chemcookit said...

So inspiring! I love it, and it may be the next dish I'll make in my Indian cooking series!!!!! Thanks a lot for taking part to the event with this great entry

Miri said...

Thats a very interesting combination! Makes sense to pair the sweetish pumpkin (or squash) with something else...looks delicious!

Meeta K. Wolff said...

I simply love the combo here Sug! My kind of dish for sure!

Anita said...

I like the idea of black chickpeas in this - will add a nice textural variety. I am going to use this idea...

Sagari said...

yummy curry suganya love your roti a lot

FH said...

I love Butternut in dishes, love the sweet tatse and I add green chillies to make it hot and sweet! Looks great !:)

musical said...

I love this combo! Usually i make bottle-gourd/crookneck squash/zucchini and eggplant, but totally have to try it with pumpkin now! Yummy!

Susan said...

I have a similar reaction to beets. I'm not fond of their natural sweetness, but they are perfect when prepared in a spicy savory.

Suganya, on occasion you can find immature, green American pumpkins which can be used like zucchini w/out any sweetness to consider, although I don't think you missed them with a pretty, inventive dish like this one. : ) That raita looks so dense w/ red onion!

Rajesh &Shankari said...

yum and that raitha is calling me..

Anonymous said...

Sounds like that would hit the spot right about now... I've never heard of black chickpeas though. I must look into that!

Cynthia said...

I've never thought of cooking these two veggie together. This is why I love food blogging.

How you my dear? Please share my love with you know who. No, I don't mean he who must not be named, that would be Lord Voldermort :D

TheCooker said...

Add chickpeas to vegetables makes the dish all the more satisfying.
I make something similar; but I've never fessed up to using sambar masala in it!

Suganya said...

Mansi, Try and let me know :)

Mythreyee, Thank you for visiting.

Thanks Mythili.

ET, I am so trying that idea. Veges, nuts and raisins sound delicious.

Marta, Thanks for accepting my entry.

Miri, Meeta, Thank you.

Anita, Do try and let me know.

Sagari, That was store-bought :D

Asha, So have I. Green chillies with eggplant is what I was focusing on :)

Susan, We grate immature pumpkins and sprinkle on top of adai. They get slightly roasted and tastes very good.

Hannah, Black chickpeas are much heartier than white ones. They are very nutritious too. Try Indian stores.

Cynthia, If only I had a wand ;). How are you, dear?

TC, No fuss grinding spices. Sambar powder is the way to go ;)

Padmaja said...

Lovely recipe Sug!! I am gonna try this!!! Looks so yum!!

Unknown said...

Hey Suganya, looks like a great combo!

Anonymous said...

Hi Suganya,

I just found your blog via Green Gourmet Giraffe and had to say what a gorgeous one it is! Your photos are absolutely stunning, and the recipes I've looked at (will have to go through the archives, too) look sensational. I think the combo of eggplant/sqaush sounds delicious, actually!

So happy to find another vegetarian/vegan blog that appeals. I will definitely be visiting again!

Manju said...

looks good... but butternut squash n eggplant..i may have to try this one..teh spice mix should go well with this..

Pooja V said...

Excellent and interesting combo. I am still confused whether i am more interested in the dish or the photograph, though i have loved them both.

Suganya said...

Padmaja, I am glad you like it. Do try and let me know.

Thanks Poonam.

Ricki, Thank you for taking time to leave your precious trail here. Hoping to see more of you :).

Thanks SuperChef.

Pooja, Why don't you make the curry, enjoy it and let me know - Whether its the photo or the recipe that you enjoyed :)

Bharathy said...

I make curry with eggplant and pumpkin separetely almost the same method!..
Would definitely try this combo soon :)
...err do I see a wilted banana leaf for a spread down there?;)

Manju said...

i got some pumpkin gonna try this!! very curious.. :)

Kalai said...

Wow, Suganya! Talk about creative! That it one combo that I wouldn't have come up with, but I would love to try it next time I have those veggies on hand. Thanks! :)

Anonymous said...

imma *smack* you for this one!!!! :)

wow.. two of my favorite veggies!


chemcookit said...

Dear Suganya,
I actually tried to make this! I modified it a little - used sweet potatoes instead of pumpkin... :) I really enjoyed it! Thanks a lot for sharing! (there is a post on my blog about the result, and a question about curry you may be able to help with. :) )

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