Call it what you will – brinjal, aubergine, melongene, brinjal or guinea squash – the many-monikered eggplant is a thing of beauty. Although many children suffer involuntary shudders at the thought of it, we adults know the secret – it’s a succulent and versatile vegetable that can turn a group of otherwise mundane ingredients into superstars.
And not only is eggplant scrumptious, but its extraordinary antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and fiber land it on countless healthiest-foods compendia. EWG’s latest, Good Food on a Tight Budget, lists eggplant as one of the most economical and healthiest vegetables a consumer can purchase. Go, eggplant!
So now that it’s high season for this exuberant beauty from the nightshade family, and it’s begining to gracefully colonize gardens and market shelves everywhere, it seems a prudent time to talk eggplant recipes.
1. Eggplant and Roasted Red Pepper Stack
Here's how to turn kale, eggplant, jalepeno, basil, roasted marinated red peppers and rice into a delicious little pile of summer: Eggplant and Roasted Red Pepper Stack
2. Green Feast RatatouilleChef Ryan Wilson of Five Crowns and SideDoor will be featuring this divine ratatouille for the Green Feast. If you’ll be in Southern California in September and are lucky enough to attend the five-course farm-to-table dinner created to benefit The Ecology Center, you can taste it from the chef himself. Otherwise, here’s the how-to.
- 3.5 lbs Japanese eggplant
- 5 red onions
- 2.5 lbs sweet italian peppers
- 3.5 lbs summer squash
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/8 cup red wine vinegar
- salt to taste
- 1/4 cup fresh marjoram
- 1/4 cup fresh thyme
3. Smoky Marinated Grilled Eggplant
Kelly adds smoked paprika, honey, and cumin to the mix for her marinated grilled eggplant, resulting in a slightly sweet, spicy and smoky marinade that does wonders to the purple globes.
4. Madras Curry with Eggplant
This recipe for Vegan Feast Catering's Madras Curry with Eggplant provides an added bonus with the instructions for a homemade curry paste that will last for a few weeks, and after used in this lip-smacking curry, can be employed in a number of other culinary jobs as well.
5. Roasted Eggplant Soup with Goat Cheese
There's a special alchemy that happens when vegetables meet the oven and are roasted into caramelized versions of their former selves. Flavors deepen and texture transforms – and eggplant takes to roasting especially well, as evidenced by Smitten Kitchen's delirious roasted eggplant soup.