"Fried brinjal in soy-lime sauce, is a simple, quick-to-the-table vegetable dish where the usually bland brinjal is brilliantly counter-pointed by a light but piquant soy-lime juice sauce." Celine J Marbeck . Author of: Cuzinhia Cristang (A Malacca Portuguese Cookbook)

Recipe Ref: www.celines-cuisine.com

  • 4 brinjals (long variety), cut into 8cm lengths or cut into 2 cm (4/5 in) thick rounds along the length of the brinjal (brinjals are often called auberine or eggplant)
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped garlic

  • 1 Tablespoon lime juice, freshly squeezed
  • 2 teaspoons thick soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 4 Tablespoons water
  • 1 teaspoon cornflour
  • Oil for deep-frying the brinjals
  • 2 red chillies, sliced
  • 1 big onion, peeled and sliced into rings

  1. Combine ground black pepper, salt and chopped garlic
  2. Combine together ingredients for the Sauce
  3. Split the brinjals into two if using the lengthways option and score the white surface.
  4. Smear the surface of each brinjal slice with the pepper-salt-garlic combination.
  5. Mix the lime juice, soy sauce, sugar and water. Stir in the cornflour until well combined.
  6. Heat the oil in a wok and fry the seasoned brinjals, scored surfaces down, for 2 minutes or until light brown. Then turn and fry the other side. Fry all the slices.
  7. Drain on paper towels.
  8. Remove all the oil from the wok except one Tablespoonful.
  9. Heat this oil gently and in the same wok, saute the chillies and sliced onions.
  10. Pour in the sauce ingredients and simmer.
  11. Taste and adjust accordingly.

Just a note:

Brinjals are one of the more problematic commercial vegetables commonly grown. They have a high infestation rate of spoiling insects and require a fair amount of culling of developing fruit to protect the plant from over-bearing weight.

Monsanto developed a genetically modified brinjal that resisted the "Fruit Shoot and Borer insect" and released the safety data in 2006. After a couple of enquiries it was passed as a safe product and released for growth as a commercial product. Indian society and watch dogs appealed massively against the announcement (2009) asking that more time be given to the safety assurance of such a widespread foodstuff and the ethical aspects of food ownership. All agree that insect resistance is a good thing but India has a long memory of dreadful things being released onto her population without reasonable study or control. Not many people agree or like the fact that food can be owned by commercial interests and they can call the shots on how they want to see this food grown and including possible withdrawal. Although I would guess there is some economic reaction in the general response, I think it's a great thing to see people as a society being so passionate and effective in their responsibility to protect food production above profitability.