Thoroughly Yummy Thursday – two eggplant recipes

Two very different recipes for eggplant are offered for you.  It is high summer and things like squash, tomatoes, beans, eggplant are coming in fast and furious.

For the Japanese sautéed eggplant – 茄子 Nasu, you can use regular eggplant.  Japanese eggplant I think has a less acidic taste and it just the right size to slice into “coins” dust with seasoned flour and fry or for stir frying.  I was given this recipe from an engineer from Osaka. It is tasty and a bit exotic and takes simple eggplant to another level.  Good side dish with chicken or pork or on its own.

For the homey and spicy Creole Eggplant recipe, regular eggplant is used.  You can use the Japanese eggplant but it will be skinnier and baking times adjusted.  This recipe utilizes fresh summer tomatoes and is an excellent vegetarian meal.  Leave off the cheese for vegan.  When I was doing a stint in Nawlins as a chef, one of the kitchen workers invited us all to his aunt’s home for Sunday Supper.  This was one of the dishes served. This is not one of those highly seasoned, luxurious recipes. It is earthy, basic and excellent with a good French bread slathered with butter, a glass of Southern style sweet tea, and a slice of buttermilk pie. (HINT) I do not always cook in the eggplant shell but add foil to the baking dish so I can remove the casserole, allow to cool, and then wrapping well and freezing. While eggplant, tomatoes, bell peppers are cheap; this is a good use of end of summer bounty.

Eggplant #1
茄子 Nasu
5 Japanese eggplants (long and thin cut shortwise into “coins” about ½ inch thick or: 1 medium
regular eggplant diced into similar size pieces.)
1 – 3   cloves minced garlic – to taste
1   quarter sized slice fresh ginger (I use a fresh ginger that is grated and sold in a tube
produce section – about ¾ tsp. This way I always have fresh ginger on hand)
¼ c.    soy sauce or low sodium soy sauce
2 tsp.  mirin, more if you want it sweeter
2 tsp. sake
1 tsp.  sesame oil

Combine Soy sauce, mirin, minced garlic and ginger in a bowl. Slice the eggplant thinly. Toss eggplant into hot pan with small amount of vegetable oil and add the sauce mixture. Saute’ at a medium heat until tender, about 10 minutes. Add a little water if necessary to keep the eggplant moist if needed. Garnish with finely cut green onion and toasted sesame seeds. Serve with steamed rice or udon, or not!

eggplant - Japanese

Eggplant #2
Matant Livia’s Baked Eggplant
Eggplant – depends on size and how many you want to feed (One medium can serve 4 regular folk or two hungry ones)
The Creole Holy Trinity – onion, bell pepper, celery, chopped finely
Fresh parsley, chopped
1/2 c. Grated parmesan cheese
Few dashes of Tobasco
1/2 tsp of fresh lemon juice
1 – 3 Chopped tomatoes Depending on size and taste preference. I use at least two. (fresh summer tomatoes are
always best for everything!)
1 – 3 tsp Worcestershire sauce (Lee and Perron’s as they say)
Cooking spray

OPTIONAL: Seasoned or unseasoned bread crumbs are good tossed with a bit of butter/margarine and the parmesan cheese, sprinkled on top for last 15 minutes to get all toasty

Take an eggplant, wash well and pierce skin with fork all over. Cut the eggplant in half and spray with cooking spray. Place both halves, cut side down on a cooking sheet sprayed with cooking spray and bake at 350 until tender. Amount of time varies with size of the eggplant.

Remove from oven and carefully scoop out cooked eggplant and coarsely mash. Add to this the Holy Trinity, parsley, peeled and chopped tomato(s), parmesan cheese, some shakes of Worcestershire sauce, Tobasco, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Let sit a few minutes and taste. Adjust seasonings to taste. Pile back into eggplant shells (or into a sprayed baking dish) and bake until warm and steamy. Add some grated parmesan cheese over top. NOT: Start with smaller amount of seasonings and add more to taste. Creole cooking frequently is “add this, some of that, splash of that.”  Use your taste buds.

creole eggplant

 

24 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Let's CUT the Crap!
    Aug 07, 2014 @ 15:22:25

    Oh my. I guess I haven’t had enough lunch and supper isn’t for another three hours. I’m not a huge fan of eggplant but I have had it and remember it was good but don’t recall where or how it was cooked.

    Reply

  2. macjam47
    Aug 07, 2014 @ 15:30:51

    I love eggplant and I order it whenever it is on a menu. My dear hubby won’t touch it. 😦

    Reply

  3. FlaHam
    Aug 07, 2014 @ 15:34:02

    Kanzen, I you did it, you finally found the one thing that you can dress anyway you like and I still won’t even taste it. LOL LOL Since I have been following you, you have made every one of the items you offered up either look appealing, sound appealing, or thru your wonderful words made me drool, in some cases it was by the ingredients used, but the until day, you had me at least willing. Smiling but today the very thought of EGGPLANT did me in. No can do. LOL LOL. Please don’t hate me LOL. I draw the line in the sand at eggplant, and I don’t even know why, yes totally irrational but there it is. I am looking forward to the next recipe. Take care, Bill

    Reply

    • kanzensakura
      Aug 07, 2014 @ 21:08:25

      I grew up eating all kinds of things – we were rather poor and had a huge garden in which we grew a lot of different veggies. So I learned early to like a variety of veggies and when I began travelling, to like a lot of different ways to fix food and enjoy.

      Eggplant when sautéed can look kind of ugly. When fried, it looks more “normal”.

      It’s okay Bill. You dn’t have to like eggplant but as a very wise James Bond once said to me: never say never! take care. hugs.

      Reply

      • FlaHam
        Aug 09, 2014 @ 10:18:48

        Kanzen, Thank you for taking me off the hook. We were lower middle class, or high poor class when I was a kid. And I think as a result of that there are things I just won’t eat. That being they were never served, or I tried it and didn’t like it, I am try ing more and more things for the 1st time now, and I am finding new things i like, and new things I won’t eat again. Your experiences show in the receipes you offer. 99.9 pct of the time you leave me drooling. Take care, Bill

        Reply

        • kanzensakura
          Aug 09, 2014 @ 12:49:48

          Drooling works Bill! I won’t try certain things: fish and any kind of organ….no way, no how, even to be polite. I’m an adventurous kinda kid and I love food. Put the two together and you got a range of stuff I’ll eat, try, or not eat again! Hugs to you.

          Reply

  4. The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap
    Aug 07, 2014 @ 16:45:59

    Like eggplant a lot. The nasu recipe sounds yummy. 🙂

    Reply

  5. M-R
    Aug 07, 2014 @ 21:36:49

    The Creole one has me drooling, Kanzen my teeny mate. Would you give me, please, at least a clue as to how long one might expect to have to use the oven …?

    Reply

    • kanzensakura
      Aug 07, 2014 @ 21:48:44

      Because the only raw things are veggies, it really does’t have to cook long, just be thoroughly heated through. I don’t do Celsius but whatever 375F would be and for about 25 – 35 min. depending on the thickness of the stuffed eggplant. I usually will take a knife and insert and pull out to see how hot the knife is. or if you have meat thermometer, whatever 160F would be in Celsius. Or cheat and take a fork and dive down deep and bring up a bit to see how hot and how tender the minced veggies are. I love this stuff. and if you don’t stuff the eggplant, you can put the stuffing into a regular baking dish and cook. you can even put some other kind of cheese on top after about 10 min and when it gets all nice and bubbly, that will help you decide. I’ve eaten this room temp for breakfast so that says how weird my breakfast habits can be.

      Reply

      • M-R
        Aug 07, 2014 @ 22:04:31

        Not in my opinion – eggplant is my favourite vegetable, and all combos of it with tomato, cheese, etc. are edible 24/7 IMNSHO. [grin]
        Thank you VERY much for this helpful input !!! X !

        Reply

  6. kanzensakura
    Aug 07, 2014 @ 22:38:45

    I totally agree!

    Reply

  7. el34ax7
    Aug 27, 2014 @ 19:54:03

    The top eggplant recipe is much like mine, only I use a split of mirin and honey. Sometimes, I’ll use rum (Sailor Jerry’s!) to deglaze the pan a bit and add some hints of vanilla.

    Reply

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