Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Annual Eggplant Rave


EggplantPanko
Originally uploaded by Food Fanatic
It's time for me to rave again about the eggplant. This was the second big one I've gotten from the farm. We also get some of the long, skinny variety...Japanese eggplant. I like the globe eggplant because it makes for nicer frying. I often use the Japanese variety for stuff like soup and stew.

My cooking is generally low-impact for the food item, and low-fat, making it low-impact on the body as well. But I can never resist frying up eggplant at least a couple of times each summer. If you keep your oil at the right temperature, you'll cook the eggplant through without having it soak up too much fat. It's difficult to coach someone in that, though. I could probably site optimal temperatures for the oil and slice thickness for the 'plant, but face it...most folks will not go to that trouble. I can tell you, though, that last night I used peanut oil instead of my usual canola for this. Just because I'd run out of canola. I'd never fry this in olive oil...too much flavor from that oil. So the peanut oil? I think it turned out to be the best batch yet. I'm not a food scientist (nor do I play one on TV), but I imagine the reason for that is because peanut oil has a much higher smoke point, so I was able to have it hotter without danger of it going ballistic on me.

Last night I served the eggplant mostly out of necessity. I was running out of time and was actually looking around for some Morningstar Farms Chik Patties. But alas! All gone! (need to add that to the grocery list. Hmm..and canola oil)

So I started hurling items out of the crisper drawer again and here was this eggplant I'd forgotten about. AND some zucchini and yellow squash!

The last bit of Panko from the cupboard(grocery list again-check!), some pre-prepared bread crumbs for when the Panko ran out, and I was in business.

Classico spaghetti sauce. Hey we scratch-cookers don't always have time for homemade spaghetti sauce. Classico and Barilla are the only two brands I'll keep around.

EggplantParmesan

Eggplant Parmesan always goes well with my guys. And it's quite filling.

And of course, I had the added satisfaction of knowing the eggplant, zucchini, and yellow squash all came from the farm. Another "farm dinner!"

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