Vankaya Gasagasala Kura – Eggplant Poppy Seeds Curry

Vankaya Gasagasala Kura

An exotic Andhra-style rich celebration dish with smooth, warm and rich flavors. No onions or tomatoes go into its making, the main player being poppy seeds which lend the dish its body and a subtle sweet flavor. As you bite into the eggplant, you can savor layers of roasted sweet, tangy and savory flavors. A memorable vegetarian delight that will completely floor you.

Vankaya Gasagasala Kura Recipe

Prep & Cooking: 45-50 mts

Serves: 4-5

Cuisine: Andhra



1/4 kg purple brinjals, wash and slice

1 1/2 tbsps oil (you can add another 1/2 tbsp if required)

1/2 tsp mustard seeds

1/2 tsp cumin seeds

1 tsp ginger garlic paste

1 tsp red chilli pwd

1 tsp coriander pwd

pinch of roasted methi/fenugreek/menthi pwd

pinch of roasted cumin pwd

3 tbsps khus khus/gasagasalu/poppy seeds, roasted and ground to a paste

1 1/2 tbsps jaggery or sugar (adjust)

very small lemon sized tamarind, extract pulp

salt to taste

1 Add a tbsp of oil in a cooking vessel, add the eggplant slices and roast them till brown on both sides. Remove and keep aside.
2 In the same vessel, add the remaining oil. Once hot, add mustard seeds and as they dance around, add the cumin seeds and allow to splutter. Add ginger garlic paste and saute for 2-3 mts.
3 Add salt to taste, red chilli pwd, turmeric pwd, coriander pwd, cumin pwd, roasted methi pwd and combine well. Add 1 3/4 cups of water and cook for 3-4 mts, till it comes to a boil. Add the roasted khus khus paste, tamarind extract and jaggery and cook on medium high flame for 3 mts.
4 Cover with lid and cook on medium low flame for 5 mts. Keep checking in between and stir fry to ensure it does not stick to the pan. Add the roasted brinjal slices and cook on low to medium flame till the gravy turns thick. It could take approx 25 to 40 mts to turn into a thick gravy. Turn off heat.
5 Serve with rice or roti.

Eggplant Poppy Seeds Curry

Vankaya Gasagasala Kura – Eggplant Poppy Seeds Curry

  Prepare time:
 Serves: 5

 Main Ingredients:

  •  eggplant
  •   poppy seeds
  •   jaggery


An exotic Andhra-style rich celebration dish with smooth, warm and rich flavors. No onions or tomatoes go into its making, the main player being poppy seeds which lend the dish its body and a subtle sweet flavor. As you bite into the eggplant, you can savor layers of roasted sweet, tangy and savory flavors.

117 thoughts on “Vankaya Gasagasala Kura – Eggplant Poppy Seeds Curry

  1. Hi Sailu,
    This dish looks mouth watering. I will def try it. I love cooking and trying new things. it’s been a while that kids zone is updated. Lookin forward for more new dishes.
    Thanks Again for ur time and patience

  2. Sailu,
    How did u get that thick gravy? I don’t see onions or tomatoes. Only few spoons of powders and tamarind extract. I like to cook in thick consistency that you got.

    Please let me know.


  3. Here we get the huge purple aubergines, if i see the small ones in my next visit to an asian store i am sure gonna buy these and try this dish. Looks so so good that i am really drooling here.

  4. Hi Sailu,
    This vankaya kura looks awesome, love that beautiful color of the gravy …never tried with gasagasalu …my family is big fan of vankaya, i will surely try this …thanks for sharing


    1. The small purple eggplants work best. Having said that you could try with the large ones too. Do leave your feedback if you try with the large eggplants.

      1. Hi Sailu,

        I tried this curry with a large eggplant. It tasted very good but I did not get the thick curry consistency as yours. I used the same measurements you have mentioned. My guess is that the eggplant quantity was more than the gravy. Will try again as the curry tastes amazing.


  5. this is delicious! i tried your mutton recipe with poppy seeds (tht’s how i cooked mutton for the first time!) and so i am certain this would be just as good.. my father would love it

  6. OMG Sailu, I am drooling..I wish I could just take that katori from the screen. I dont get poppy seeds here, is there anything else I can substitute it with and make this curry ?

  7. Oh Sailu….this looks awesome!!!!!!! You inspire me and I am sure thousands of others…
    Your Chat items this summer was a mega hit as I tried loads of them…Could you possibly share some ideas of Meal ideas…it would be really useful if you could suggest the combination of dishes for a complete meal when we invite guests over…Many thanks and please keep blogging as my day doesnt end without having a sneak peek at your website!

  8. Hi Sailu,

    Am planning to try this dish now.. Hope it turns out to be as good as the chetinnad chicken which is a fav in the house :).. By the way, you mentioned jaggery twice with two different measurements.. Is that a repeat or did you type in jaggery instead of another ingredient?

    Thank you,

  9. Hello Ms.Sailu, mee vantalu chala baguntayi. pachi venna (pala meegada chilikithe vache plain fresh venna) ela cheyalo cheppagalara? US lo dorike palatho meegada kattatam ledu. maa abbaiki nalugu lo venna kalipithe skin chala chakkaga untundi. ikkada alanti product edanna meeku teliste cheppandi.


  10. It looks awesome. I visit this blog whenever I want to try something new. I think you are a big fan of “Vankaya”. “Sorakaya” recipes are very few in this blog. Adding more “Sorakaya” recipes would definitely help “sorakaya” lovers like me.

  11. Hi Sailu,

    I must say that I check your blog almost daily, though this is my first comment. I really really like your recipes a lot:)

    Just had a small question for you. Every time I use poppy seeds in any recipe, they leave a bit of raw smell ( in spite of roasting). How to avoid this smell? Please let me know

    1. Fresh poppy seeds when roasted have a wonderful aroma and taste good too unlike old stock poppy seeds. Buy fresh poppy seeds and try this recipe. You should not have any problem.

  12. Hi,

    This sounds lovely – I’m going to cook it tonight
    (4x quantities because we’re greedy and have
    two large aubergines to use up!)

    Just two questions:
    Do you use white poppy seeds, or the dark ones?

    When you say “a very small lemon sized ball
    of tamarind”, I have difficulty knowing just how
    much you’re talking about. How many tablespoons of pulp do
    you end up with? Alternatively how much weight of tamarind
    are we talking?

    Thanks for your mouth-watering blog.

    1. Use white poppy seeds. I usually eyeball the ingredients. For 2 large aubergines, I’d suggest you use 2 1/2 tbsps of fresh tamarind paste. I am not sure about store bought tamarind paste so I really can’t give you exact measurements. What you could do is, while the tamarind-poppy seeds-jaggery base is cooking, taste the liquid. Adjust the ingredients according to your taste. Add more tamarind for a tangier flavor.

      For 2 large aubergines, use about 4 1/2 tbsps of poppy seeds, 2 1/2 to 3 tbsps tamarind paste and at least 2 1/2 to 3 tbsps of jaggery or sugar. Use about 4 to 4 1/2 cups of water.

      Alternately, you can grill the aubergines in the oven till soft. We are not looking for a crisp and golden browne aubergine slice. It just has to turn soft with a light brown tinge.

      1. Oh, that’s really interesting. I was just going to multiply
        all the ingredients by four, to match with the 4x weight
        of aubergine. I never know when that is
        appropriate – would you multiply up all the spices too?

        For tamarind, I usually use “wet” tamarind (East End brand) which
        still has all the seeds in and has the same flavour as the
        regular tamarind block, but is much easier to paste. I’m
        not keen on the jars of concentrated paste – I don’t think
        the flavour is as good.

        As it happened things got too late last night and we just
        had a pizza, so I’m gonna make it tonight instead…

        Thanks for your very helpful response!

        1. Your most welcome! For spices: Use 1 tsp mustard seeds, 1 tsp cumin seeds, 1 tbsp ginger garlic paste, 1 tbsp coriander pwd, 1 tbsp red chilli pwd,1/2 tsp cumin pwd and 1/2 tsp roasted methi pwd.

          1. Fascinating… some things multiplied by 2 and others by 3 e.g. double cumin but triple coriander.

            Is there a rule of thumb here, or are these amounts just from your experience with this particular recipe?

            As lover of indian food who has learned everything from books only, I find this kind of thing fascinating, and this is really useful to me, thanks.

            1. Its basically from experience and not a rule of thumb. You need not double/triple the seasoning ingredients as much as you would the spice powders. If you doubled a recipe, you would increase the amount of salt and chili powder accordingly, similarly with spice powders.

    1. I use a small blender jar to grind small amounts of masala/paste. Soak the roasted poppy seeds in little water and grind to a fine paste.

  13. Hi Sailu,

    I tried this recipe. WOW!!!!! It came out so well. Had with rice and paapad. It tasted so yummy….

    I really really loved it…. ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. I would add a small twist to this recipe.Chop an onion and carmelize it and grind it to paste and add to the gravy. It gives a nice body to it. Again SAILU thank you for all those wonderful recipes and suggestions.

  15. wow yummmy !!!

    I have to make it this weekend.
    ๐Ÿ™ it does not look like 1.5 TSP of oil though.
    These curries take a lot of oil ๐Ÿ™

  16. I tried this recipe last night. I didn’t realize white poppy seeds existed, so I made mine with the darker, bluish-grey ones that are normally in lemon poppy seed cake. My gravy came out a very unappetizing dark purple color. It still tasted good, but next time I will find white poppy seeds!

    Thank you for the recipe!

  17. Hi Sailu

    Hope you and Nehal are well.

    A question on poppy seeds.
    Sometimes recipes say – soak poppy seeds in water and grind to paste.
    I find this impossible as the quantity is few teaspoons. How can you do this in a mixer
    Do you have to grind larger quantities
    I find it easier to dry grind without soaking
    Thanks for your help

    Isn’t september Nehals birthday. My son just turned 9

    1. Yes, its difficult to grind few tsps of poppy seeds. Yes, you can dry roast poppy seeds and make a fine powder. That’s absolutely fine. Belated b’day wishes to your son. ๐Ÿ™‚ Nehal turned 8 in August.

  18. Hi Sailu,
    The picture is downright mouth watering!!!!. And i am not really brinjal lover. Iwas wondering if there is a substitute vegetable for this dish.
    I would really love to try this as soon as possible.

    Thank You

  19. Hello

    Tried this recipe today. The curry was tasty but didn’t get the consistency shown in the picture. Was I supposed to fry the khus khus paste before adding the water? Also when u say roast am I to fry the khus khus till brown?.. Thanks in advance

  20. Hi

    Accidently i visited your website, found very authentic i tried this receipe but i could not grind 3 tsp poppyseeds to a fine paste i have very big US blender, then i grinded 1/2 onion to a fine paste..somehow i could make curry thick..i will try some more receipes from your website hope it will turn out good

  21. Nice blog & gr8 recipes.. I have been to your blog many times and wanted to try a few things & I started with this recipe..I made this yesterday & the taste was no doubt wonderful. Well but I never got the thick conssistency like urs had though I added 4 tblsp poppy seeds & little cashew & almond , yet I somehow did not get the texture & thickness like yours. Is there anything else you add ? I would love to make it regularly even with the outcome that I tastes very good

    1. I fail to understand why you didn’t get the same texture as reflected in the image above. If you followed the recipe to the T, you should be able to. Maybe you should cook the curry for a longer period allowing it to thicken and then add the brinjals.

  22. sailu garu, greetings to you. thank you very much for the receipes you’ve posted. I liked very much. sailu garu, I am a bachelor and live alone in Delhi and I cook myself, coz i dont have the habit of eating outside. But I need some help from you. I grinded poppy seeds+coconut and stored in a container in the fridge. but after one week I found fungus formed on it despite being cold-storaged. Can you please tell me what should I do to prevent fungus forming. I would like to tell you, that I cook only for two serves and not allow for the next day. pleze help me. thank you. nepo

      1. sailu garu, thanq v much for your suggestion so promptly. I will try it today itself and get back to you abt the results. btw,my best wishes to you and your family. thank you once again. nepo

  23. Sailuu ure a gift frm godd ..!! Ths blog is awesomee …!! I made da sandwich,it went okay … This is reallllyy helpingg me n my frns a Lott!!! <3

  24. I tried this recipe but when i bought polly seeds i got the dark when roasted and ground the sauce became dark in colour. should i not use the dark coloured poppy seeds

  25. I tried this recipe but when i bought polly seeds i got the dark when roasted and ground the sauce became dark in colour. should i not use the dark coloured poppy seeds

  26. Hi Sailu.

    All your recps are great… Looking at the picture i tried this yesterday .. But did not turned out as the picture. or anywhere it.. Are we missing any ingredients in the recp???

  27. Hi Sailu.

    All your recps are great… Looking at the picture i tried this yesterday .. But did not turned out as the picture. or anywhere it.. Are we missing any ingredients in the recp???

        1. The trick is to add more of oil, coriander powder and tamarind paste (of course in the right proportion) which renders that rich gravy look. This recipe comes somewhat close to the vankaya pulusu(Andhra) or brinjal kuzhambu(Tamilnadu). So its my suggestion to try this.

          1. Tried this tonight for dinner. Skipped the initial eggplant roasting step. Tossed and roasted the eggplant along with rest of the spices. Came out awesome. Initially the gravy was watery, but slow cooking helped to bring the final gravy to the right consistency. Mine looked almost identical to the picture.

  28. There is no way the gravy would be that oily and oozing oil like that with 1 1/2 tbsp of oil for the entire recipe. I see this over and over again with most of the recipes here. I am not trying to be mean, just pointing out the obvious. I follow the recipes with so much enthusiasm and later on realize how it looks nothing like in the pictures because the proportions are all different.

    1. Whatever,
      I appreciate your honest opinion regarding your experience with the recipes posted here. In this particular recipe, it is the ground poppy seeds (it is an oilseed) which imparts that oily appearence to the dish.

  29. what is khus khus/gasagasalu and poppy seeds is this three are same or different please tell me i like this dish and i want to make it but i cant understand this three please reply me mam……….

  30. hi sailu this brinjal recipe is totally different from the ones i used to cook. very rich and authentic. thanks for sharing. this is going to be a treat for the kids.

  31. I mahself try different ways of cooking food.. And I just love cooking. Almost every dish you implant is awesome. Thank you Sailu.

  32. Hi Sailu, this recipe came out so perfectly! I had a similar curry at my sister-in-law’s house while visiting Vizag last year and had never tried to cook with the poppy seed paste before. This recipe was easy to follow and the results were very well received by my husband as well. ๐Ÿ™‚

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *