Baingan Ka Salan (Baby Eggplant In Coconut Cashew Gravy)

Baingan Ka Salan (Baby Eggplant In Coconut Cashew Gravy) | Playful Cooking

The first time I tasted Baingan Ka Salan was several years back at my work place. One of my colleague’s Mom was in town for a few weeks and during that time, his lunch box was the best in the group. After sharing with the gluttonous team, he used to barely get a few bites. Soon, his Mom started packing a little extra for us and we shamelessly didn’t even bother to stop her. We were just so very thankful to eat such delicious home cooked food.

Baingan Ka Salan (Baby Eggplant In Coconut Cashew Gravy) | Playful Cooking

Baingan Ka Salan (Baby Eggplant In Coconut Cashew Gravy) | Playful Cooking

One day, he brought eggplant curry and I was not too thrilled because back then, I could enjoy eggplant only two ways, either pan-fried or roasted. The soggy eggplant in curry was never appealing for my taste buds. I needed that crunch or that char smoky flavor. But when I saw how everyone was licking their fingers and going crazy on the taste, I just had to take a bite. It didn’t change my view on eggplant in a curry but that taste lingered for a very long time.

Baingan Ka Salan (Baby Eggplant In Coconut Cashew Gravy) | Playful Cooking

Baingan Ka Salan (Baby Eggplant In Coconut Cashew Gravy) | Playful Cooking

Baingan Ka Salan (Baby Eggplant In Coconut Cashew Gravy) | Playful Cooking

Few months back, we had the same dish in a restaurant and those workdays just flashed in my mind. Since then, I wanted to give this curry a try at home. Although I am calling this dish Baingan Ka Salan, I have definitely detoured a little bit by using cashews instead of peanuts. It’s only because I don’t like peanuts as much and cashew adds an extra creaminess to any gravy that I absolutely enjoy. The cashews combined with nutty sesame and coconut makes the gravy so very luscious!

Baingan Ka Salan (Baby Eggplant In Coconut Cashew Gravy)

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour

Baingan Ka Salan (Baby Eggplant In Coconut Cashew Gravy)


  • 5 to 6 baby eggplants
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • ¼ cup cashews
  • ¼ cup desiccated grated coconut
  • ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • few fresh curry leaves
  • salt
  • extra cashews for garnish


  • Slit the baby eggplants in the center without cutting it all the way through. Rub some salt in the slits and allow it to rest for at least 30 minutes.
  • In a small pan, dry roast the grated coconut, sesame seeds and cashews. Once done, blend them into a paste. Add a little water, if required.
  • Heat enough oil in a pan or a wok to shallow fry the eggplants. Keep the eggplant aside once fried. Alternatively, you can roast the eggplants in the oven.
  • Now, heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a separate pan and scatter mustard seeds, cumin seeds and curry leaves. Once it sizzles, drop the onion and season with salt. Add turmeric and give it a stir. Cook until mild golden in color.
  • Add the cashew, coconut and sesame paste, sprinkle some salt and give it a stir. Allow it to cook for a couple of minutes and then, add enough water to form thick gravy. Drop the fried eggplants, lower the heat and allow it to simmer for about 5 minutes.
  • In a separate pan, add a little oil and drop some curry leaves along with some cashews. Once it sizzles, turn off the heat and pour it on top of the egg plant curry. Serve it warm with your choice of bread or rice.

Baingan Ka Salan (Baby Eggplant In Coconut Cashew Gravy) | Playful Cooking

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Maya says:

Interesting recipe ! Love the presentation. Do hop in to check some Eggplant recipes on my site when you find time, will certainly try this one out.Thanks, for sharing !

Linda Morris says:

Can you tell me please how the eggplant should be prepared, cut into chucks or sliced.

Always know I am in for a treat when your recipes appear in my in box.



I’m salivating thinking about the creamy yummy curry, those eggplants look like purple jewels on the curry, looks so tempting .

That cashew gravy sounds and looks heavenly! As always, great photos.

Christine says:

What a delicious-sounding recipe! I’ll be searching for some cute little eggplants like those so I can make this soon. Your photos are so beautiful!

Desiree says:

This looks gorgeous! Eggplants are one of my favorite vegetables–and in another month or so, they’ll be popping up at all the farmers markets here in Boston. When they do, I know exactly what I’ll be making!

Pooja says:

Finally, I have found the perfect recipe of Eggplant Salan. I missed it a lot from the day I started living far from my hometown. My mother used to cook. But now I can prepare it.

Asha says:

I can totally understand the lunch box situation. Happened a lot at school.
I love this one. The cashew curry is definitely a great twist to the salan. Love the pictures as usual.

Gorgeous tones here Kankana, I love the colour of those little purple aubergines! What a delightful dish, beautifully captured as always! x

Edlyn says:

What killer photos, Kankana!!! Wow. And this dish sounds so conforting

Edlyn says:

What killer photos, Kankana! And this dish sounds so comforting from start to finish. I want to try making this at home. Soon soon.

Priya says:

very nice post..
thank you for sharing..
My congratulations to the growth of your blog…

Chandy says:

My sister told me about your site the other day. Love your approach to cooking and your photography is beautiful! Looking forward to trying out this recipe.