My One Fairy Tale Eggplant

comments (4) July 23rd, 2010

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ChrisMcLaughlin Chris McLaughlin, contributor
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Cant wait to bring my Fairy Tale Eggplant into the kitchen.
 
Photo by amy b under the Creative Commons Attribution License 2.0.Click To Enlarge

Can't wait to bring my Fairy Tale Eggplant into the kitchen.

 

Photo by amy b under the Creative Commons Attribution License 2.0.


While I had planned on growing several different varieties of eggplant this season, I ended up with only one in my front garden bed. It's a hybrid called 'Fairy Tale'. That eggplant and a runner bean are the only hybrid vegetables I have in my garden this year. I've never grown Fairy Tale before and to tell you the truth, I've never cooked my own eggplant ever.

The only eggplant that I've eaten are the ones that someone else has prepared for me. From the pictures I've seen of this variety, Fairy Tale looks like a gorgeous specimin in its lovely lavender with white stripes. I'm hoping that it tastes as great as it looks in the garden. Anyway, this year I had every intention of growing quite a few of these beauties, but the best laid plans and all that.

The other weird thing is that I'm not used to having one of anything. And that's all I have. I'm not talking about one variety; I only have one plant of that variety. I just never grow things this way. For me, more is just more. But this lonely little eggplant is amazingly stout and flowering like crazy. So I keep cheering it on.

What kind of eggplant is your favorite to grow and prepare? And if you have any fabulous recipes, please login and share them with us!


posted in: Fairy Tale eggplant

Comments (4)

kristenclif writes: Looks testy
Posted: 1:16 am on August 23rd
timonrooster writes: Thanks for sharing
Posted: 1:56 am on July 13th
Loosiana writes: Here are some favourite recipes that will make an aubergine afficionado of anyone!

AUBERGINE PARMIGIANA
3 - 4 serves

INGREDIENTS
1 large eggplant, sliced 3/4" thick
flour
1 egg beaten with a little milk
dried breadcrumbs
olive oil
8 oz Mozzarella cheese, sliced
6 oz tomato paste
white or red wine
a pinch of ddried oregano or 2 tbsp fresh, chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
salt, black pepper
4 oz fresh Parmesan cheese

Dip eggplant slices first in flour, then egg, finally in breadcrumbs, coating well.
Saute a few at a time in shallow olive oil till crispy brown. Drain.
Arrange in a single layer in a large baking dish.
Arrange Mozzarella slices on top.
Mix a little wine of your choice into the tomato paste to make a thick sauce.
Stir in the oregano, garlic, salt & pepper.
Spread 2 - 3 tbsp sauce on each slice.
Grate Parmesan over.
Bake at 400 deg F for 15 minutes, and serve hot.


BABA GHANNOUSH (Middle Eastern dip)

INGREDIENTS:
1 large eggplant
1 clove garlic
¼ - ½ cup lemon juice (to taste)
3 Tbsp tahini (sesame seed paste)
1 tsp salt
3 tsp olive oil

GARNISH:
2 Tbsp lemon juice
2 tsp olive oil
crushed red pepper, a dash of cumin,
chopped fresh parsley or coriander.

PREPARATION:
Preheat oven to 375 degrees and bake eggplant for 30 minutes, or until outside is crisp and inside is soft.

Allow to cool for 20 minutes.

Cut open eggplant and scoop out the flesh into colander and allow to drain for 10 minutes. Removing the excess liquid helps to eliminate a bitter flavor.

Place eggplant flesh in a medium bowl. Add remaining ingredients and mash together with a fork or in a food processor. It can be smooth or textured.

Place in serving bowl and top with lemon juice and olive oil. Add other garnishes according to taste.

Serve with warm or toasted pita or flatbread. Enjoy!


STUFFED BAKED EGGPLANT
Serves 6

INGREDIENTS
3 medium eggplants
2 sweet red peppers, diced
5 Tbsp olive oil
2 cloves crushed garlic
2 onions, chopped
4 tbsp chopped parsley
4 tbsp chopped fresh basil, or 2 tsp dried
3 - 4 peeled, chopped tomatoes

TOPPING
6 oz walnuts, finely chopped
2 oz dry breadcrumbs
3 oz Parmesan, grated
2 Tbsp butter, melted
4 - 8 oz cream

Slice eggplants in half lengthwise.
With a soup spoon, scoop out flesh, leaving 1/4" on skin.
Chop eggplant into 3/4" cubes.
Place the shells into an oiled baking dish.

Heat 3 Tbsp oil in large skillet.
Saute onion, eggplant & peppers, tossing until they begin to soften.
Season with salt & pepper. Stir in garlic, herbs & tomatoes.
Simmer a few minutes.
Fill the eggplant shells with this mixture.

Combine topping ingredients, using enough cream to make a soft paste. Spread evenly over the filled eggplants.
Bake at 350 degrees F for 45 minutes.
Serve hot.


MOUSSAKA (Classic Greek dish)
Serves 6 - 8

INGREDIENTS
2 lb eggplant sliced 1/4" thick
Salt
Olive oil

MEAT SAUCE
1 large onion,chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tbsp olive oil
2 lb ground beef or lamb
1 cup peeled, chopped tomatoes
2 Tbsp tomato paste
1/2 cup white wine
2 Tbsp parsely, chopped
1 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon
salt & pepper

CREAM SAUCE
3 Tbsp butter
4 Tbsp flour
2 cups milk
1/4 tsp nutmeg
salt & pepper
3 Tbsp grated Parmesan or Kefalotiri cheese
1 egg, beaten

Sprinkle eggplant slices with salt.
Leave in a bowl for 1 hour to draw out excess moisture.
Drain slices, then rinse all salt off.
Drain and pat slices dry with paper towels.
Shallow fry the slices on both sides.
Stack on a plate when cooked.

MEAT SAUCE:
Gently fry onion & garlic in oil for 10 mins.
Add meat and brown over high heat, stirring well.
Add all remaining meat sauce ingredients, seasoning to taste.
Cover and simmer gently for 30 mins.

CREAM SAUCE:
Melt butter in a saucepan.
Stir in flour & cook gently for 2 minutes, stirring.
Pour in milk all at once. Bring to the boil, whisking constantly.
Allow to simmer gently for 1 minute to thicken.
Remove from heat.
Stir in nutmeg, 1 Tbsp of cheese, salt & pepper to taste.

ASSEMBLY:
Grease a baking dish 13" x 9" x 2".
Lay 1/3 of eggplant slices on base.
Top with half the meat sauce.
Reoeat layers, then finish with a layer of eggplant.
Spread cream sauce over.
Sprinkle with remaining cheese.
Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.
Stand at room temperature for 10 minutes.
Cut into squares to serve.
Posted: 6:40 pm on October 1st
startide_rising writes: I have had a lot of success this season with two varieties: Long Purple and Dusky (also a hybrid). It took them some time to get started, but I now have four plants of each that are full of fruit right now. We enjoy cooking them in various recipes, out favorite is a miso paste eggplant stirfry.
Posted: 2:38 am on August 1st
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