Special Indian Arrival Day Recipe
  Debbie Bachu Ragoonath
April 2016

Curried Chicken Breast and Eggplant Simmered in Coconut Milk

The East Indian indentured labourers who came to Trinidad brought with them their own cuisine, complete with traditional seasonings and methods of cooking. Today, East Indian dishes are part of the national culture of Trinidad and Tobago. On this occasion I have chosen the following recipe that is sure to please your taste buds. I hope you enjoy cooking this delicious dish.


1 ½ lbs chicken breast (skinless)

1 lb. eggplant (melongene / baigan)

1/3 cup diced onions

1 cup coconut milk

½ cup chopped tomatoes

¼ cup water

1 teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon black pepper

2 tablespoons coconut oil

1 teaspoon sliced garlic

2 tablespoons green seasoning *

¼ teaspoon saffron powder (turmeric)

3 tablespoons curry powder (Madras)

½ teaspoon ground cumin / geera

1 teaspoon or ¼ scotch bonnet pepper

1 tablespoon lime juice




  1. Wash chicken breasts in lime juice and water. Drain and cut the chicken into 2 inch cubes.

  2. Season chicken with salt, black pepper and green seasoning. Cover and place in refrigerator. Allow chicken to chill and marinate for ½ hour.

  3. Heat coconut oil on a medium flame in a deep sauce pan or iron pot. Add the diced onions and garlic. Lower heat and cook for 3 minutes until lightly golden brown.

  4. Add curry powder and stir well. Add ¼ cup water to the aforementioned mixture and allow to cook for 2-3 minutes until a darker colour along with a grainy texture is observed.

  5. Add seasoned chicken to the pot and increase the heat to medium. Turn chicken pieces, ensuring the pieces are well coated with the curry paste. Cover pot and cook for 5 -10 minutes.

  6. Wash eggplants and peel the skin. Dice into 1 and ½ inch cubes. Add to chicken together with tomatoes, pepper and coconut milk.

  7. Incorporate this well into the liquid. Raise the heat and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.

  8. Add ground cumin after 15 minutes and stir well.

  9. Taste dish and adjust salt and pepper accordingly.

  10. Remove from flame and serve with jasmine rice or roti.


Note: * Green seasoning – minced or finely chopped chive, celery, cilantro, parsley, pimento and onion.

Variation 1

Curried Channa with eggplant in coconut milk.



1 tin chick peas (Channa or Garbanzo beans)

  1. Substitute  chicken breast with chick peas (if dried chick peas are used, rehydrate overnight and pressure cook or boil until tender, but not too soft)

  2. Follow recipe as stated above.

Variation 2

Curried shrimp with eggplant in coconut milk.


1 ½ lbs medium shrimp

  1. Season shrimp using the same method as chicken breast.

  2. Instead of adding the season shrimp to the curried paste, add diced eggplant and stir for 3 to 5 minutes.

  3. Add coconut milk, tomatoes and pepper. Cover and simmer for 10 -20 minutes on medium heat.

  4. Add seasoned shrimps to the mixture and simmer for a further 5 to 10 minutes. Stir well.

  5. Serve as above.



By: Debbie Bachu Ragoonath | FOOD | April 2016