What to do with eggplant?

What to do with eggplant?

We are harvesting tons of heirloom eggplant. I received quite a few questions about eggplant at the market this weekend so I thought an eggplant blog was in order. First, let me introduce you to the four varieties of eggplant we are growing this year.

From left to right,  Diamond, Chi Yei, Black Beauty,  and (not pictured) Syrian Stuffing.

Now,  what to do with eggplant?   Baba Ganoush is one of my favorite eggplant recipes,  it's a middle eastern delight!  You can eat it as a dip or a spread.  

First,  prepare a charcoal grill with a little hardwood to achieve an authentic  smoky flavor.  Give the eggplant a good rinsing.  Once the grill is hot, just put the whole eggplant on the grill.

Close the grill with all vents open and let it cook.  After about 25-30 minutes check on the eggplant.   It should look something like this. 

As it cooks you'll want to move them around to be sure they aren't over cooking. If they split, move to the edge away from the hot coals. 

Keep cooking and gently moving the eggplant around to cook evenly.  Ideally you want the skin near black but the inside to feel squishy.   Don't overcook or you won't have anything to scoop out.

Remove eggplant from grill.  Gently lift them with tongs. 

Now set them all aside to cool for at least an hour.  You want them cool to the touch since you'll need to handle them with your hands while scooping out the inside. 

Now they are cool,  and if you've done it right the skins will easily peel away from the flesh.   Throw the flesh in the blender, being careful not to include any blackened skin.

Blend on high for a good minute.   Add Tahini (a sesame seed paste), fresh lemon,  and salt to taste.   I added about two tablespoons of tahini and a tablespoon of lemon juice to my batch here.   Blend again.  Remove the baba ganoush from the blender.  You can eat at room temperature or refrigerate and eat cold.   Keep leftovers refrigerated. 

Eat with chips,  pita,  or any cracker.  Spread, instead of mayo, on a sandwich.  I hope you enjoy this recipe!

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