Recipe by Kayla Howey @theoriginaldish
Transporting us to Thailand today with this grilled eggplant dish — beautiful eggplant from the market grilled until tender, topped with a red curry sauce, spiced cashews (made with Spice Tribe’s Thai spice blend), and lots of fresh herbs.
Today I’m wrapping up our Spice Tribe summer recipe series! It’s been such a flavorful journey creating different recipes using their unique spice blends. I was inspired by the Moroccan blend to create these flavorful chicken meatballs, then moved on to the California chile blend for these grilled fish tacos, and now we’re making a Thai-inspired eggplant dish!
I’m using Spice Tribe’s Long Tail Sunset blend — a mix of coconut, ginger, tamarind, thai chili, coriander, cumin, and lemongrass.
It’s full of spice and a slight sweetness. Perfect for tossing with toasted cashews to top grilled eggplant and a vibrant red curry sauce.
I really love cooking with Thai flavors. They’re rich, bold, tangy, and sweet. I made a red curry sauce for the grilled eggplant out of shallots, fresh chile, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, red curry paste, honey, coconut milk, fish sauce, and lime juice. It’s all simply combined in a saucepan and simmered until thickened.
While the sauce simmers, you’ll toss your cashews and spices together. I keep this topping really simple since the spice blend is SO flavorful.
You’ll then cut your eggplant and toss it with a good coating of oil. I found a lovely variety of eggplant at the farmer’s market that just took minutes to become tender and slightly charred over the grill.
All of these components — the grilled eggplant, red curry sauce, and spiced cashews — come together on a large platter and make for a BEAUTIFUL presentation. I finish the dish with lots of mint and Thai basil for a fresh finish.
If you’re new to using Thai flavors, this is the perfect recipe to start with because the methods are really easy, yet you’re working with a ton of interesting ingredients. I just love it, and I hope you do, too!
Red Curry Sauce
- 2 tsp coconut oil
- 1 shallot, thinly sliced
- 1 red Fresno chile, thinly sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tsp minced ginger
- 1” lemongrass, smashed
- 2 tbsp red curry paste
- 2 tbsp honey
- 1 can coconut milk
- 1 tsp fish sauce
- 2 limes, juiced
- ¾ cup roasted, chopped cashews
- 1 tbsp Spice Tribe Long-Tail Sunset (thai spice blend)
- 2 ½ lbs eggplant (look for a variety of long, thin eggplant)
- vegetable oil
- kosher salt
- fresh mint leaves
- fresh thai basil leaves
- lime wedges
Red Curry Sauce
- Heat a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the coconut oil and let melt. Add the sliced shallot and red chile. Sauté for a few minutes until caramelized.
- Stir in the garlic, ginger, and lemongrass. Cook for another minute.
- Stir in the red curry paste and allow to cook for 30 seconds. Add the honey and coconut milk. Whisk until combined. Bring the sauce to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 25 minutes until thickened, whisking often.
- At the very end, remove the piece of lemongrass and stir in the fish sauce and lime juice.
- Combine the cashews and spice blend in a mixing bowl.
- Toss well until combined.
- Heat the grill over high heat.
- Cut the eggplant into halves or quarters (depending on their size). Coat the eggplant with a generous amount of oil and toss well. Season with a good pinch of salt on all sides.
- Place the eggplant onto the grill. Let grill until caramelized on one side. Flip to another side and allow to caramelize again. Continue to flip until all sides are caramelized and the eggplant is tender.
- Transfer the eggplant to a large platter. Spoon the red curry sauce over top. Sprinkle with the spiced cashews. Garnish with lots of fresh mint and thai basil. Squeeze more lime juice over top.
Grilled Eggplant with Red Curry Sauce & Spiced Cashews was originally published in Spice Tribe on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.