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Meera’s vegan Aubergine katsu curry

Made with naturally sweet vegetables, Meera Sodha takes on a classic Japanese sauce contains a few cupboard essentials and some surprises too. Serve up with rice to get your fill of katsu goodness.

Serves 4 Total Time 1hr


Get the ingredients here.

For the pickled radishes

  • 100g radishes, topped, tailed, finely sliced
  • 1⁄2tsp salt 
  •  3tbsp Mirin
  • tbsp white wine vinegar

For aubergine katsu curry

  • 3 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • 1 onion, chopped 
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled, diced
  • 1 sweet potato, peeled, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1.5 cm ginger, peeled, grated
  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1.5 cm ginger, peeled and grated
  • 2 tbsp curry powder
  • 10 tbsp plain flour 
  • 500ml vegan veg stock
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce 
  • 2 tbsp tomato ketchup
  • 2 aubergines, cut into 0.5cm slices 
  • 200g panko breadcrumbs
  • Rice and salad leaves to serve


  1. Preheat oven to 200°C/180°C fan/gas 6. Put the radishes into a heatproof bowl, add 100ml just-boiled water, stir in the salt, mirin and vinegar, and set aside.
  2. To make the katsu sauce, heat the oil in a frying pan, then fry the onion, carrots and sweet potato for 10 mins. Add the garlic and ginger, fry for 2 mins, cover then leave to steam for 5 mins.
  3. Add the curry powder, stir for 2 mins, then stir in 2 tbsp flour. Add the stock slowly and bring to the boil. Add 1⁄2 tsp salt, the soy sauce and ketchup, take off the heat and use a stick blender to blend until smooth.
  4. Line an oven tray with baking paper. Put 8 tbsp flour on a lipped plate, then slowly mix with about 180ml water and 1⁄2 tsp salt to make a thin paste.
  5. Put the panko on another plate. Cover both sides of each aubergine slice in the flour paste, shaking off any excess, then press into the panko.
  6. Lay the coated slices on the prepared tray and drizzle both sides with oil. Bake for 15 mins on each side, turn the heat up to 240°C/ 220°C fan/gas 9 and cook for 10 mins more, until crisp.
  7. Just before serving, gently reheat the sauce for 5 mins (add water and salt if need be). Put 3 or 4 aubergine slices on each plate, douse in the sauce, and top with drained pickled radish. Serve with rice and salad leaves.

Originally published in Guardian FEAST

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