Tag: eggplant

In Season: Eggplant

by in In Season, July 25, 2011
grilled eggplant Food Network Magazine’s Hoisin Eggplant.

Grilled eggplant is a summer favorite, but there are plenty of other ways to enjoy this scrumptious delight. Check out these fun eggplant facts (did you know it’s a fruit?) and healthy, delicious recipes.

When, Where, & What?
Eggplants (Solanum melongena, Solanaceae) are part of the nightshade family along with peppers, potatoes and tomatoes. They were originally named after eggplants found in Europe that resembled an egg in shape and color. Eggplants only became acceptable to eat in the U.S. about 50 years ago; prior to that, folks believed that eating it caused insanity, leprosy and cancer.

Eggplants grow on vines, similar to tomatoes, and can be found in a variety of sizes, shapes and colors. They can be white, purple, black or green and vary in length. Their shape can be spherical, curved, or long and narrow. The most common eggplants have a deep purple skin with a teardrop shape and are about 8 to 10 inches long.

Eggplants have a spongy flesh, meaty texture, and slightly bitter taste (the skin is especially bitter). Female eggplants contain more seeds and are more bitter, while male eggplants contain less seeds and have a slightly sweeter flavor. To determine the sex of an eggplant, check  the bottom: a female will have a deep indentation shaped like a dash while a male eggplant will have a shallow, round indentation.

The largest producers of eggplants in the U.S. include Florida, New Jersey and California. They’re also grown in Mexico, China, Italy, Turkey, Egypt and Japan. Popular varieties include Black Beauty, Rosa Bianca, Classic, Orient Express, Black Italian, Japanese, Lavender and Cloud 9. Eggplants are in peak season from July through October.

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Eggplant Parmesan, Lightened Up

by in Meal Makeovers, July 13, 2010
Eggplant-Parmesan Sauce
Pasta with Eggplant-Parmesan Sauce - Photograph by Kang Kim/Food Network Magazine

Growing up in an Italian family, eggplant “parm” was a staple in my house. While it was cheesy, fried and delicious, nowadays I’d rather cut back on some of the calories and fat and focus on the delicious fresh ingredients.

See how we lighten up this Italian favorite »

Weekly Bits: Smarter Snacks & Eggplant Ideas

by in Uncategorized, August 29, 2009

This week, our readers here and on our Facebook and Twitter pages pondered yogurt dilemmas, peppery pizza and a healthy twist on that old favorite, eggplant Parmesan.

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In Season: Eggplant

by in In Season, August 25, 2009

There aren’t many vegetables I don’t love, and it would be tough to narrow my favorites down to a top 10 list. If I had to, though, eggplants would definitely make the list. Friends often ask, “Are there ways to prepare them other than fried eggplant?” Yes, of course!

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Spotlight Recipes: Sammies to Celebrate Dad

by in Healthy Holidays, Healthy Recipes, June 20, 2009

BBQ Pork Sandwich
What dad doesn’t enjoy his grill and a great sandwich? Tomorrow, celebrate the fathers (and grandfathers) in your life with these cookout-friendly sandwiches – one for the meat eater, the other for the veggie eater and both a good alternative to a fatty hamburger or hot dog. Be sure to ask Dad what his favorite side is, or consider prepping a few of these salads.

Barbecued Pork Sandwich »
Grilled Eggplant Sandwich »

Spotlight Recipe: Eggplant Sandwich

by in Healthy Recipes, June 8, 2009

Eggplant Sandwich
Need a new lunch idea? This baked eggplant and cheese sandwich is a nice change and easy for toting. Packed with veggies like bell peppers and tomatoes, the sammy will give you enough vitamin C to cover your daily needs. With 350 calories per serving, it’s also works as a light, veg-friendly dinner served with baked sweet potato fries.

P.S. It’s also a perfect way to celebrate Meatless Monday.

Get the recipe »