Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Eggplant--The Underloved Vegetable

First of all Happy Halloween. This holiday really only applies to children under the age of 15 who get to have all the fun collecting candy. But, if you’re dressing up, kudos to you. I’m not. Instead I’m suffering through a work commute with both the Giants parade and Halloween…yay. Can you feel my enthusiasm….How ironic is it that the Giants’s color is orange? So, since it’s Halloween, logically, I’ll be writing about eggplant.

                                                              Hello Happy Eggplant!

For all you eggplant haters out there, I was long ago quite like you. I just thought eggplant was plain weird. But, now I would list it as one of my top three favorite veggies! The list of ways to cook it is endless so you will never be bored!

There is also not just one type of eggplant. There are the Italian eggplants, like the type to make your typical eggplant parm. There are Indian eggplants, Japanese eggplants, and Thai eggplants. Who knew every country had its own type of eggplant? But, my personal favorite is the Chinese eggplant! I really like my eggplant soft, even mushy, and bursting with saucy flavor. This is exactly how they make it at my favorite restaurants. Whether stir fried or steamed, there is so much you can do with an eggplant. For my busy day, I just cut up a Chinese eggplant and stuck it in a pan of warm water this morning. I drained the water and added a bit of sauce and I was ready to go with snack for the day! I got a new sauce to use: Annie Chung’s Shitake Soy Ginger. Don’t be afraid of the mush of eggplant. It really is the best part, and eggplant is so filling as well.

If you are really as interested in the various types of eggplant as I am (which you’re probably not but just in case), refer to the following page:

I actually don’t even think this is every type because I have seen some tiny eggplants at a specialty market that aren’t listed on this page!

My love for eggplant was actually inspired by a Whole Foods dish. It consisted of eggplant and mushrooms in a dark sweet and salty sauce. If you are ever lucky enough to happen upon this dish at the hot food bar, try it! My local Whole Foods (one of the four I go to), carried it for a couple of weeks, but it disappeared after that.

On a side note more relative to Halloween, I must try the pumpkin spice covered malt balls I found at Sprouts! Oh my goodness! Who knew pumpkin products went this far in their spectrum?

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