Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Poor Man's Loin...

I decided to play god once. I changed the landscape, asserted my will, and created life of my choosing, and in my order. I called this world "Garden", and it was so.

Seriously though. In one row, I wanted to plant 4-5 eggplants. (Is it an Eggplant or an Eggplant plant?) I was, however, late at the store to buy these bushy plants and only managed to score two; one Japanese, one regular purple. I lamented the pathetic representation until harvest time. These little plants will not stop throwing fresh eggplant at me. I'm pulling on average 1 a day. I have a problem... or do I? It is here that I dare to discover which variety is better and what style to cook in.

Variety is easy as can be. Cook them both and taste. The Japanese eggplant, being long and thin, produce many more, so I cook them first. I never had a Japanese eggplant, but I decide to grill them (inspiration but not recipe by Bobbi Flay). A little olive oil, salt, and pepper, then a hop onto the grill (gas). The result? tender. flavorful. Absolutely identical flavor to regular eggplant. ok, tie for variety.

I still had quite a few Japanese eggplant(s?) left so the next day I sliced it thin on the bias, and proceeded to bread and fry them into thin chips. Delicious. throw some salt on them when they are still hot with oil (which eggplant absorbs oil, fyi don't leave sitting too long in pan) then enjoy. I quite enjoyed that, but I was far from done with these little gems.
The next night, Pasta was the decision. My garden is vomiting food at me now and I need to use it, so I think Veggie Sauce. ok, I'm part Italian, lets do this. Simmer some garlic in oil, add halves of grape tomatoes till reduced, then add diced Jap. eggplant and zucchini. I salt and pepper here, then add tomato sauce. Stir it up, season to taste, served over Farfalle(bow tie) pasta. Delicious. Eggplant a little mushy, but good.
Last, the titan. The all famous, "Eggplant Parm". I have two beautiful regular Eggplant, I dip in egg, cover in bread crumbs, then I fry in some oil. At same time, I make a sauce. (again, I had veggies to use) I cut up grape tomatoes, and some fresh Green pepper and put in oil with garlic until soft, add salt and pepper. I then add Hunts sauce, Oregano, red pepper flake and Basil. Eggplants in dish with sauce on top and a lot of Mozzarella. Put in Oven for about 10 min.

Who wins? If you cant tell by reading, it was the Parm all the way. Nice spice, delicious kick, and great cheesy-ness. Well the way I cook it. But I like my cooking. Hands down the way I will do it for friends in the future. Glad to clear that up early in life.

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