Indian Egg Curry (Ande ki kari)

eggcurrypIn spite of the messy looks this curry is the ultimate feast for egg lovers. The mere idea of eggs laced by a thick, aromatic onion and tomato sauce already makes me dreamy and hungry, so the fantastic outcome was not really surprising. I had been hesitating among several sources and finally chose Classic Indian Cookery by Julie Sahni, a book I particularly appreciate since it’s written with an utmost care of details and respect of the user. After the successful Butter Chicken, Indian Chickpeas in Tangy Sauce and Chicken in Tomato and Onion Sauce, Ms Sahni hasn’t let me down again.

The curry is medium hot, loaded with complex flavours and the lack of cream or coconut milk makes it pleasantly light. It does take time, like most Indian dishes, but can easily be made in two stages, for example split into two days. All the ingredients (maybe apart from fresh coriander) are in constant stock in my pantry, eggs count among my most beloved food products, so this curry will certainly become a staple.

TIPS: Do not skip the onion browning process. It takes effort and time, but it’s totally worth it.

Eggs are the stars here, so make sure you use good quality ones (free-range or, better, organic) and do not overboil them. Julie Sahni advises cooking eggs just before serving the dish.

I have slightly modified the amounts of ingredients. Check Classic Indian Cookery by Julie Sahni for the original recipe.

Try to find black cardamom, which has a deeper – though not harsh – taste and has not much in common with green one (apart from the shape of the pods).

I thought this curry was perfect served with Pickled Chilli Peppers.

Preparation: about two hours

Ingredients (serves two):

4 eggs

2-3 tablespoons oil or ghee

1 can (400g) chopped tomatoes or freshly chopped (skinned) tomatoes

4 medium onions, chopped

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger

1/2 stick cinnamon

2 black cardamom pods (or 4 green)

1 teaspoon powdered coriander

1 teaspoon turmeric

1/2 teaspoon powdered chilli

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 teaspoon salt (or more)

1 teaspoon garam masala

fresh coriander leaves, chopped

Heat the oil in a pan.

Add the onions and, at medium heat, brown-fry them until they take a caramel colour, constantly stirring so that they don’t burn.

(This might take even 20 minutes, but is definitely worth the time and effort).

Add the garlic, the ginger. Stir-fry them for about 2 minutes.

Add the cinnamon, the cardamom pods and stir-fry for one more minute.

Add the ground coriander, the turmeric, the chilli and the pepper as well as the chopped tomatoes. Cook at medium heat (uncovered) 10 minutes until the mixture thickens.

After ten minutes add about 1/2 liter boiling water and salt.

Give the sauce a stir, cover and let it simmer for about 20 minutes or more if it’s too liquid.

(In the meantime adjust the seasoning, adding more chilli, more salt etc. if needed).

Put the sauce aside for at least 1/2 hour.

Boil the eggs and shell them. Cut in two lengthwise.

Just before serving heat the sauce at low heat, add garam masala, give the sauce a stir.

Put the halved eggs carefully into the sauce (the cut side up) and continue warming the sauce until everything is hot.

Serve sprinkled with chopped coriander.

26 Replies to “Indian Egg Curry (Ande ki kari)”

    1. Thank you, A_Boleyn. I think this curry is perfect to begin with: mildly hot and really easy. I am a big fan of eggs, so I’m thrilled to have one more delicious egg recipe in my collection.

  1. I couldn’t find the messy looks in the picture:)
    I’ve tried this, its nice. Never made it myself though. Eggs are cheaper than chicken, so perhaps a cheaper alternative for chicken curry!

    1. Thank you, Mr. Three-Cookies (the eggs have suffered a bit, especially the yolks… and in general I have problems with Indian curries: I often cannot make them look appetising). A good egg is certainly better (and as you say cheaper) than a low-quality, “cardboard” chicken breast 😉

  2. Sissi I’ve been playing around (as foodies do) with the idea of eggs in a tomato sauce for the past few weeks — you know how these ideas can percolate for a while. But I must say, your delightful curry version brings the idea to a whole different level of inspiration. In fact the whole panoply of Indian spicing here has me swooning… I bet our entire family would love this dish and I might even rescue my eggs from the water before they become rock hard 😉 (I’m getting better at eating desirably cooked eggs). I must give it a try and let you know how it goes. Now to find a beautiful dish set like yours… (and what mess? this is precisely how I would want soft eggs enrobed in an aromatic tomato sauce to look like – warm, succulent and inviting).

    1. Thank you so much, Kelly. Frankly, the bowl looked so messy… I haven’t managed to slice the eggs neatly and in my kitchen curries never look appetising. I hope you will like this simple curry. I’m still impressed at how filling this dish is, being quite healthy at the same time! I am also delighted by the idea of eggs in a tomato sauce! Do try to buy black cardamom (if you don’t have it yet). It changes the whole dish!

  3. Hi Sissi, sorry, but I’ve been MIA in the last week. (A lot of family obligations)…could not get to my blog sometimes for a couple days-just don’t have the convenience of I-Pad, I-Phone, lap-top which some; or I should say most people have nowadays.
    I absolutely love your colorful, and perfectly spiced egg curry; would have liked to see the entire photo of it!
    Also, did you boil the eggs hard, or slightly soft boiled? This version is very similar to an Italian version with tomato sauce, parsley and basil, and of course the Italian spices. I do love Indian cuisine, and curry of a simple kind, such as this would be on top of my list, since I’m a serious eggs-lover! The pickled chilli peppers go so perfectly with it!

    1. Dear Elisabeth. Don’t explain! We all have our private lives and are absent from blogging from time to time. I also never do anything related to blogging or commenting through my phone either (though I read posts and comments). I prefer to be in front of my home computer.
      Thank you so much for the compliments. It was my very first egg curry, but I will certainly explore other recipes too. I boiled eggs hard,but haven’t managed to slice them neatly, hence the messy red and yellow splashes in the bowl 😉

  4. I desperately need a curry dish for warm me up! I love all kinds of curry and have made plenty but I’ve never tried with eggs as the main protein. This is going to my on my to-make list for sure. Thanks for sharing!!

    1. Thank you, Yi. For egg lovers, this is really a fantastic dish. So quicker and easier than meat curries.

  5. Usually curries do not depict good in photos. You managed to make your curry a very appetizing one. I love its colors and I am sure it was hearty and pleasing!

    1. Thank you so much, Katerina. I know what you mean… curries can look really awful (mine certainly do!).

    1. Thank you, Gintare. Egg curry is a much easier and quicker option than any meat curry I know. I will be making it very often.

  6. Now I am in heaven! What a fantastic dish! This is going to make a wonderful Sunday night meal. I do have a question – Are the eggs hard-boiled or soft-boiled? I’ve tried dish where you actually cook the eggs in the hot tomato sauce. I love this method better of adding boiled eggs to that spicy and flavorful sauce. WOW!

    1. Thanks a lot, MJ. It’s a fantastic winter meal indeed. You can hard boil or soft boil the eggs, as you wish. Do you mean breaking raw eggs into a sauce? I do this quite often.

  7. Yes, I do mean breaking raw eggs into a sauce. I’ve done it a couple of times and the egg just went everywhere. I probably didn’t have the sauce hot enough. However, we weren’t thrilled with the texture. I think the hard or soft boiled would be better for us. Have a wonderful week!

    1. I see! Have you tried making a hole in the sauce before breaking the egg? This is what I do and it stays in place more or less. My sauce is boiling hot and rather thick (it’s usually a chunky bottled tomato sauce). The best result is of course the poached egg with runny yolk which you break at the table…
      Obviously putting hard-boiled or soft-boiled egg halves into the sauce is much much easier! I have also tried doing it recently with some leftover chicken curry sauce (I have eaten the chicken pieces and still had lots of sauce): I have added one egg and it was a real feast! The best leftover idea of recent years 🙂

  8. Messy? Not at all! It looks superb Sissi! Truly. The red chillies on top are the perfect decoration (and taste accompaniment I’m sure) – they really lift it up. I love egg curry – my mother used to make them from time to time. Of course, they weren’t quite so traditional or intricately made. It was usually a base of onion and curry paste so the wonderful warming, spicy flavours didn’t come through as strongly as if you’d made it up from scratch as you have here, but I always loved the eggs inside. It was always such a treat when I stumbled across a nice piece of creamy yolk! 😀

    1. Thank you, Charles. You are very kind (the egg was a bit messy when I cut it… and frankly I don’t know how to photograph curries so that they look appetising). Once you remember what spices to put, curries are so easy to prepare. For me Indian cuisine is complicated because of the number of spices (and their ratio). Though now I make my Murgh Masala without even looking at the recipe! I must cook Indian more often… it can be light and healthy (like this curry!).

  9. YUMMY! I make a different version of egg curry, with no tomatoes and more tumeric… I never could find a specific recipe for this type, which I had at an Indian restaurant, so I kinda ‘winged it’ and it came out amazing. I’ll have to try this version.

    1. Thank you so much, Susan. I must say it has opened a way for me to play with other Indian curries and eggs. I have recently made Murgh masala (it’s on my blog: probably the easiest Indian curry with a very short list of ingredients) and I had too much sauce, so I just put one boiled egg and it was delicious!

  10. I hear a lot about egg curry from my Indian bloggers blogs, and I tried it for the first time last year at my friend’s house. It was very delicious. Never thought of egg and Indian curry before (but come to think of it, I like to eat Japanese curry with egg tho… hmm! How silly was I to even think about this combination!?). You make international dishes, Sissi! I admire of you!

    1. Hi, Nami. Thank you for the kind compliments. I loved this curry! Do try making it at home. You will be surprised how easy it is.

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