Wednesday, April 6, 2011

E is for eggplant!

Eggplant is one of those vegetables that make you say "mmmm-mm" when it is cooked properly.  We literally fight over the leftover eggplant in our house because it is just that good.  It is delicious cold the next day or reheated.  If eaten cold, you mash it up and spread it on some of that fresh bread I told you about four letters ago or nice rustic crackers!

Eggplant comes in all shapes, sizes and a few colours.  Using fresh eggplant is so much better than buying it in the store.  It just seems that it is never bitter when it comes out of the garden.  Last year I accidentally grew eighteen plants of eggplant.  (How did I accidentally grow that many?  Simple, there was more than 4 in each flat I had purchased so I wound up with extras and couldn't bring myself to throw them out.)  It was a good thing that I did plant them because it was so cool all summer that my crop was small and it seemed like we were always waiting for some to come off the garden.  I grew some small white and purple striped ones, some larger conventional ones, and some long narrow oriental style eggplants.  All were great baked or grilled.

Grilled/Barbecued Eggplant

olive oil (preferably extra virgin because you want the flavour)

If you are using a large store-bought eggplant, cut it into rings about 1/2 inch thick (I leave the skin on for this.) and salt generously.  Let sit in a colander for about 20 minutes to drain and then pat dry or spread on some towel. 

Crush some garlic (I am very generous with my garlic for this dish.) and mix it into some olive oil. Brush this well on both sides of the eggplant.

Barbecue slowly until they are a light golden brown and very tender.  Remove from heat and put into a bowl.  Squeeze a lemon over the slices and cover the bowl with a plate.  (I use plates to cover things because it means less plastic in the environment.)  They will become very limp - this is what you want.

Salt very lightly and serve.



  1. "When it is cooked properly" is the key phrase here. It can also be pretty gross. But yes, I like a well-prepared eggplant dish and it's good for you. I rarely have eggplant since we tend not to cook too much at home and I have not ordered any eggplant dishes in restaurants too often.
    You've given me a craving for some eggplant.

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  2. yum! I've never had eggplant - I may have to talk my other half into rectifying this!

  3. Eggplant is one of those dishes where proper cooking is key to the difference between great and definitely not so made me hungry for some too - I am headed to the grocery store tomorrow to pick some up, Lee.

    Laura - best to make sure that they are soft even when they come off the grill - they are so much better then. You can sprinkle some parmesan cheese on them as well as the lemon juice.

  4. I will have to try eggplants grilled sometime. I always make mine into a curry and I drool just thinking about it.

  5. OO - I love curried eggplant...but not as much as barbequed, Barb!