Six awesome eggplant recipes that will bring the mysterious nightshade vegetable (ahem...fruit) into the sun and onto your table this summer.
"And my baby cooks her Eggplant/ 'Bout 19 different ways./ Sometimes I just have it raw/ with Mayonnaise." ("Eggplant," lyrics by Michael Franks) Most people I know aren't fond of eggplant. They haven't discovered, as jazzman Michael Franks sings, that eggplant can be cooked "'bout 19 different ways." The French know better. They call it aubergine—a lovely name for a versatile fruit. And although we think of it as a vegetable, it really is a fruit—specifically a berry—related to the tomato and potato. Ranging in color from white to green to dark purple and in size from 2 to 12 inches, eggplant can be baked, braised, boiled, fried, grilled, roasted, sautéed or stewed, finding a home in all kinds of dishes, from dips to entrées. Here are six recipes (not quite 19) that showcase summertime eggplants in all their colorful glory.
—By David Feder
This melange of fresh summer vegetables cooks up quickly.
East meets...East? Middle-eastern pita and eggplant sandwiches get a little dress-up from some Far-eastern flavors.
Chickpeas (garbanzo beans) add loads of texture and fiber to this dip.
This hauntingly addictive smoky fire-roasted relish can be scooped up with nearly anything—fresh veggies as described below, or grab a bag of chips and start scooping.
Meatless Monday Perfection—a bed of cheesy polenta soaks up the soupy goodness of veggie and white bean stew.
When summer eggplant is in season, try this yummy pasta dish that features tomatoes and goat cheese.