The Incredible Edible Eggplant

Eggplant Blossom

Such Promise

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It all started innocently enough, with a blossom identical to the one pictured above. I had learned my lesson well, or so I thought. See, last year’s 2 eggplants were just about smothered by my tomato plants. The tomatoes quite literally took over my then-new raised garden bed as if the soil had been smuggled out of Chernobyl. I picked only 1 eggplant and it was a Japanese variety, not at all what I had expected. This type of thing has happened enough times to convince me that there are people who delight in swapping name tags between differing varieties of the same vegetable. This spring’s cuckoo was a jalapeño masquerading as a cayenne pepper.

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Growing Up Eggplant

Growing Up Eggplant

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This year, I planted 3 eggplants with the conviction that I would keep my eye — and pruning shears — on the neighboring tomato plants. I won’t bore you with the details but I was partly successful, with two plants growing nicely. The 3rd, well, is now engulfed. All facts considered, I really cannot complain. The 2 remaining plants have managed to produce more of the bulb-shaped vegetables than I thought botanically possible. (I really must get that soil tested.) As a result, I’ve pulled out every eggplant recipe at my disposal in trying to stay ahead of these 2 overly productive plants.

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The Day's Eggplant Harvest

The 1st Eggplant Harvest 

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Here are the dishes that I’ve prepared thus far. I’ve supplied the recipe for the first dish and links for the rest, the exceptions being the eggplant lasagna and a pickled eggplant. Both of those recipes are in the works.

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Grilled Eggplant & Tomato

Grilled Eggplant & Tomato

Pre-heat the barbecue or grill pan. Slice the eggplant into approximately 3/4 inch (2 cm) rings. Cut the plum tomatoes in half, removing the seeds if you like. Use a pastry brush to sparingly coat the eggplant with olive oil. Lightly drizzle the tomato halves with olive oil and then season everything with salt and pepper. Giving the eggplant slices a head start, grill both vegetables until cooked to your satisfaction. Remove to a platter. Garnish the vegetables with a mixture of chopped fresh rosemary, thyme, basil, and parsley. Season with salt & pepper before adding a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil or Olio Santo (See Coming soon … ).

This vegetarian dish may be served hot, warm, or at room temperature, and will make a great light lunch or tasty side for any meal.

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Pasta alla Norma

Pasta alla Norma

A favorite of Sicily, this eggplant & tomato sauce was created in honor of the Bellini opera of the same name. You needn’t travel to Sicily nor the nearest opera house to enjoy this dish, however. Just take this LINK to see the recipe that I posted.

The recipe calls for a garnish of ricotta salata. If you cannot find this cheese, crumbled feta is a great substitute and more readily available.

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Caponata

Eggplant Caponata

Also originating in Sicily, caponata is another dish that celebrates the eggplant. Today, it is found throughout Italy with ingredients that often vary from region to region. I’ve shared Mom’s recipe, which you can find HERE.

Don’t forget to make more than needed. Add a few beaten eggs to the leftovers to make a tasty frittata the next day.

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Stuffed Eggplant

Stuffed Eggplant

Grandma served this dish to her girls, Mom & Zia, when they were young. You can well-imagine my surprise when my Zia in San Marino also served stuffed eggplant during my recent visit. The recipe for this tasty contorno — and popular in both sides of my family —  can be found HERE.

Any of the stuffed vegetables in the linked recipe can be used to make a great tasting sandwich for your lunch the following day.

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Eggplant Lasagna

Eggplant Lasagna

A layered dish, eggplant lasagna features pasta sheets, baked eggplant slices, and a tomato sauce, with or without meat. Oh! I almost forgot the cheeses. Asiago, mozzarella, and Pecorino Romano combine to make this one flavorful main course.

True confession time: I had thought that I’d already published this recipe and was surprised to learn that I had yet to share it. Not to worry. That oversight will be corrected in the weeks to come.

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Jamie Oliver’s Pickled & Marinated Eggplant

Marinated Eggplant

Jamie has done it again. In his recipe, eggplant is chopped, bathed in a pickling liquid, and then marinated in herbed olive oil. Best of all, this same technique may be used with mushrooms, onions, small peppers, zucchini, and fennel, with each vegetable having its own suggested herb to include. You can check them all out by taking this LINK.

I did make one substitution to his recipe. In place of oregano, I used marjoram. For those unfamiliar, marjoram is related to oregano but is a bit more mild and is favored in Le Marche, the ancestral home of the Bartolini.

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Indian-Style Pickled Eggplant

Indian Pickled Eggplant - Preview

Looking for something with a bit more heat? Well, with my cayenne pepper plants competing with my eggplants for top honors, I went web surfing for recipes. With many to choose from, the final recipe is an amalgam, using ingredients that I had on-hand or that could be easily sourced. The result was a spicy dish that I really enjoy. Best of all, it’s reduced my eggplant AND cayenne pepper inventories. A bit too involved to be shared here — this post is long enough already — I’ll publish the final recipe in the weeks ahead.

This eggplant dish supplies the heat that Jamie’s pickle was missing.

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Baba Ganouj

Baba Ganouj 1

Can you detect which has been garnished with a drizzle of Olio Santo?

Although I’ve enjoyed baba ganouj far too many times to count, I’ve never actually prepared it, relying instead on one that I purchase from my favorite Middle Eastern grocery. Well, with a glut of eggplant filling my vegetable crisper, baba ganouj seemed like yet another great use of the melanzane and I sought help from the blog of our resident Middle Eastern food expert Sawsan, The Chef in Disguise. Her blog is brimming with delicious recipes and you can view her baba ganouj recipe HERE.

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And there you have it. This is my way of handling 2 incredibly productive eggplants. If you think I’ve eaten plenty of eggplant lately, well, you’d be correct — and you haven’t even seen the inside of my freezers. I’ll be enjoying(?) eggplant dishes for months to come.

If I’ve missed an eggplant dish that you’re particularly fond of, or, you prepare a tasty variation of one of the recipes that I’ve just highlighted, don’t be shy. Please share the recipe or link in the Comments section below. These plants just won’t quit!

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You may have noticed …

… My recent absence from the blogging world. This is Honey Time in Michigan’s Thumb and my Cousin and his Wife graciously offered to open Zia’s home so that I could get honey for my friends and neighbors. That’s the official explanation. In reality, my Cousin – aka “The Max Whisperer” – hadn’t seen Max in about a year and missed their “nature hikes”. In the photo above, the 2 BFFs are returning from their last hike of the visit. Also above is a photo of 2 of the 3 cases of the honey that I brought back. All told, our little group of honeycombers purchased about 6 cases of honey that day.

As luck would have it, my Cousin found a baseball-sized puffball growing in the yard. When picked 3 days later, it had grown to the size of a cantaloupe. As of this writing, I’ve yet to prepare it — but I will!

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It’s déjà vu all over again …

Eggplant Parmesan

Eggplant parmesan is the one dish in my repertoire that I’ve yet to prepare using the current harvest. Having made 2 trays of eggplant lasagna – one of which is still in my freezer – I took a pass on eggplant parmesan. Who knows? If we don’t have a killing frost soon, I just may turn to eggplant parmesan to help me deal with this surplus. Worse things could happen. You can see the recipe that I’ll be following simply by clicking HERE.

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Coming soon to a monitor near you …

Olio Santo - Preview

Olio Santo

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104 thoughts on “The Incredible Edible Eggplant

  1. What an excellent post which I will share with my gardening/eggplant growers and eggplant eaters. No shortage of recipes! And the honey haul looks sweet, John. Max must have been happy to be reunited with his best bud. Your photo of your first harvest is perfect!

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    • Thank you, Ruth.As you can see, I’d been cooking up a storm trying to stay ahead of these over-productive plants. ThIngs have slowed down now, thankfully, although there are still about a half-dozen still growing. Yes, Max and his Whisperer had a great time together. Truth be told, however, Max is slowing down a bit. Unlike previous visits, Max needed some down time upon returning from their hikes. In the past, he be raring to go all day long and well into the night. I think we could all identify. None of us is getting any younger. 🙂

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  2. John, those type of flowering plants ALWAYS need a mate to make a male and a female to reproduce. And lots of bees! But if you plant at least three flowering veggies of the same next to each other and the bees come around, one will turn the opposite sex to produce fruit/veggies for both. I found two plants usually doesn’t cut it. I learned that the hard way too. I am so happy for your abundance of eggplant! Lots of great recipes here. 🙂

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  3. …the aubergine bonanza, the honey, the mushroom….what’s not to like? + can I ask something? (A little cheecky, perhaps): since u seem to be in eggplant experimentation mood, why don’t u try the Sicilian and Campania “eggplant with chocolate” dessert and report to us all? 🙂 ?? (Melanzane col cioccolato)/ re: eggplant parmigiana|: I also love the Calabrian and Apulian version “in bianco”: fried eggplant slices+ scamorza or caciocavallo, pecorino, ham, cooked eggs, basil (I will write a post soon)

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    • Thank you, Stefano, for the suggestions. I’ve not heard of eggplant with chocolate but really do want to give it a try. I’ve still some eggplants on the vines and always have plenty of chocolate around. This sounds very good! I look forward to your post for the “in bianco” dish, too. With that list of ingredients, it must be molto delizioso, just like the other recipes that you’ve shared.

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  4. what a fabulous problem to have – an excess of eggplants. We planted eggplants once… #aFoolAndHerMoneyAreEasilyParted #BrownThumb I am hard pressed to name a fav dish here – they all look splendiferous. I am very much pro-eggplant. In fact, I made eggplant parm last night.

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    • Last year’s eggplants were an utter bust, so, I had to try again this year. I never thought I’d be in this situation. I expected to be inundated with zucchini. Now I’m not sure what to do. WIth no one in my are planting zucchini, I’ll need to plant as many as 3 of the plants so that they flowers can be pollinated. Well, if that works and the eggplants repeat this year’s performance. I’m gonna be in a heap of trouble! Maybe I can fill my car’s trunk and try to sell the surplus in the vegetable stand’s parking lot. “Hey, Lady. Wanna check out my zucchini?’ I may have to work on that sales pitch. 🙂

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    • I’m with your husband, Jasline, and love eggplant. For whatever reason, this year’s tomato plants, although they grew well, didn’t produce many tomatoes. My neighbors all have said the same. None of us can explain it but, like all gardeners, we cannot wait until next year. 🙂

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  5. I don’t know whether to laugh or cry. Laugh because your over-abundance of aubergines reminds me of me and my courgettes (yes, I planted way too many) or cry because my eggplants have been an utter failure this year. Never mind, I’ll live vicariously through you and the contents of your freezer. What a fantastic range of dishes … and I’m really looking forward to seeing the eggplant pickle recipe. Lx

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  6. It looks like you’ve been having a great time. Eggplant used to be expensive here, but lately it seems to have settled in to being just another ordinary vegetable. Good – I can eat more of it! Thanks for the recipe ideas 🙂

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  7. Love eggplant and make many of these style of dishes but your eggplant lasagne is a new idea to me, and brilliant, like a parmagiana with pasta sheets, yum. Interested to see what you make with the puffball, I thought they were inedible

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    • I’m such a pasta fanatic that I’ll choose eggplant lasagna over parmigiana every time. As for the puffballs, I blogged about them 5 years ago — almost to the day! I certainly cannot speak for all of them but these in Michigan are definitely edible and can even be bought at our farmers markets — by the slice!!!! They are very mild tasting and don’t do well in sauces or stews. Here’s my link to the puffball post, if you care to check it out.

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  8. Didn’t plant eggplant this year, so now I’m jealous! I’ve never done well with it, though, which is why I didn’t this year. No problem — farmer’s markets are full of the stuff! Worse, though, is our tomatoes didn’t do well at all — too hot, then too wet, then too dry. All of that stuff. 😦 Anyway, such a nice collection of recipes! LOVE Pasta alla Norma — so good. Fun post — thanks.

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    • WHat is is it with the tomatoes this year? My plants continue to grow like weeds but they din’t really produce anything. My Brandywine didn’t even flower until mid-August! My neighbors all have the same complaints. Well, at least I had plenty of eggplant to distract me. PLENTY of eggplant. I could have done with a little less distraction. 🙂

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    • Ha! I remember you tales of dropping off zucchini, Glenda. Eggplants, though, don’t have that kind of acceptance here. I did ask around but no one was interested. I grew ’em and I was stuck with ’em. Now my freezers and shelves are full of ’em. 🙂

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  9. Bournjourno John! You really must get that soil tested!!! I adore egg plants and now you have just given me a 101 ways to prepare this gorgeous dish, in addition to the ones that are in your delicious book. Honey season sounds like a great adventure for both you and Max. Seriously we need a dog whisperer. Just today, Buddy- our Yorkie, has torn through the slider screen door. He is such a little turkey.

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    • Buona notte, BAM. Yes, this year’s eggplant crop caught me completely by surprise. I never expected to be picking 4 or 5 at a time every few days. I truly will be enjoying eggplant dishe well into winter, now that my freezers are w–stocked. And, yes, Max did enjoy his time with his BFF – and the feelings were mutual. The 2 are inseparable. With a little luck, we may be returning in a few weeks for one last visit before the snows come. I haven’t mentioned it to Max yet. He’d be insufferable if he ever got wind of our plans.
      Have a great week, BAM!

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  10. I will eat absolutely anything with eggplant! We prepare it all the time. My favorite is of course with pasta, but I do love it grilled too! The kids even got into it in Spain as a tapa, and enjoyed it grilled in Italy too. They were nervous to try it in pasta, but they are coming around. It’s absolutely one of my favorite things to prepare. Yours look just wonderful!!! So glad you had a great time in MI. Hugs dear friend! 🙂

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    • First, love the new Gravatar — so cosmopolitan-looking. I, too, love eggplant although this year’s crop did test me. I had no idea that the 3 of them would conspire to bury me with eggplants. Even now, there’s about a half-dozen melanzane waiting to be picked. I have to believe this will be the end of them. They’ve got to be tired, the poor things. 🙂

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  11. The caponata and baba ganouj are two of my favorite eggplant dishes. Those are really some fine looking eggplants you have there. Why don’t you send me a nice, large sample of that soil and I will test it for you! 😉 So glad you and Max had fun on the honey gathering trip. 🙂

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    • And I’m partial to the lasagna, Betsy, but you probably could have guessed that. I do need to spend some time now, during the off season, researching how to better prune tomato plants. Sure, I can lop off branches but they also happen to be the ones with the blossoms. What good is a well-maintained vine it there aren’t any tomatoes? There has to be a way. My way just ain’t working! 🙂
      Yes, I really looked forward to getting back to Michigan. Not really sure if we’ll be able to go back next year, so, this trip — and maybe one later in the month — could be our last. Max is so not going to like this! 🙂

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  12. John, you are without a doubt, the eggplant King. Such beauties they are. I love them, but hubby not so much. However, I think that if I disguised it in a Lasagna, he might not notice. 🙂 Lovely honey season, and how fortunate that you were able to bring back so much of the golden stuff. Max must have been overjoyed too. Always good to see your posts pop up. 🙂

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    • Thank you. Yes, it was a very good 2 weeks, culminating with a trip back to Michigan. It was a little strange being in her home but without Zia, I must admit. I kept expecting her to come up behind me and look over my shoulder as I cooled our dinner. I’ve a feeling she was there, just like always. 🙂

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  13. I want to eat everything I see here right now! Double portions too. I’m such a little piggy. My dad is growing eggplant. I ran out of space in my little garden which I STILL need to do a post on! I will get there. Community work keeping me too busy at the moment.
    Love to you and darling Max.
    🙂 Mandy xo

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    • Thank you, Mandy. I’ll add eggplant to our menu for when you visit. Good thing, too. Eggplant is one of the few things Max will not eat, meaning that we’ll be able to eat in peace for a change. What a concept! Hurry up and get here! 🙂

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    • It’s a good thing that I, too, enjoy it, Tanya. I really have had my fill, however, even though there’s still another half-dozen ripening. Pray that they be the last!
      I hope all’s well for you both up on the mountain, my Friend. Enjoy the fall.

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  14. An excellent post John. I kept reading all the wonderful eggplant recipes and … but wait, there’s more, How generous to share them all. I am now getting the beds ready to plant for the summer ahead. Last year my eggplants were rather sad- they matured too late and were too small. This year I hope for better things. And yes, the Bonica ( fat) variety tends to be far more useful than the long thin ones. A nice eggplant lasagne – now that’s what I need. Grazie John.

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    • Thank you so much, Francesca. This variety of eggplant was certainly suited for the dishes I prepare. Eggplant lasagna is such a great dish. It is hearty enough that even a carnivore like myself will enjoy it meatless. For my tastes, it’s al about the cheese. 🙂

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  15. Am just holding a shiny, somewhat out-of-season aubergine in my hands, madly unpacking a month’s groceries. Oh, I have loved caponata for the longest time and also have all kinds of stuffings for it: but this is such a ‘nice’ one methinks your simple delightful recipe will have ‘it’ say ‘I grew for a purpose’!!!

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    • Your eggplant speaks to you? Thank heavens mine haven’t that ability. I can only imagine walking into the yard with my morning coffee, only to hear them scream, “Don’t pick me. Pick the tomatoes!” 🙂

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      • Why not? They may just say ‘I would so love be part of your cooking history’ ? Of course my very early tomatoes are a’screamin . . : !! ‘Me too, me too!’ Don’t be fooled , they are far off the way . ., . . 🙂 ! Yoicks: walking into my back garden with a proverbial coffee . . . . sorry Milord: that s part of in-bed comfort!!!

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        • “In-bed comfort”? That hasn’t been possible since that first night I let Max into my bed 8 years ago. Every morning since then, he gets me up and out of bed so that I can feed him. It used to be that he’d then beg to go into the yard. These days, however, he heads back to bed. I’ve not even had my coffee yet and he’s back in bed and on my pillow!!!! In fact, I bet if I checked, that is exactly where I’d find him now. I guess what I’m trying to say, Eha, is that my eggplants had better keep their mouths shut. 😀

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  16. A lot to take in, John – “ode to the eggplant”. Gardening is such a lottery. Our eggplant crop did fine, but mysteriously the zucchini and large tomatoes failed. I thought nothing could kill zucchini or tomato. Love all the recipes and look forward to that eggplant lasagne. Envious of that golden honey haul!

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    • It seems that our gardens are mirror images, Debi. My zucchini were a complete failure and my tomatoes a real disappointment. They grew like weeds but produced very little. My neighbors with veg gardens all said the same thing. In a wa, it’s probably best. Imagine if my zucchini and tomatoes had produced like the eggplants. What in the world would I have done with it all? You live to far away or you would awaken to find a sweet bundle of veg on your doorstep — regularly! 🙂

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  17. Jeez, John! You weren’t kidding when you said you’d been eating eggplant morning, noon, and night! So many fantastic recipes here – especially can’t wait to try the lasagne and the stuffed eggplants. They look like they could be a great meal and not just a contorno!

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    • Those stuffed eggplant are a family favorite, along with stuffed onions & tomatoes. My Zia in San Marino also stuffs zucchini and mushroom tops with the same breading. I love ’em all! I just wrote in a reply that it’s probably best that my tomatoes and zucchini did so poorly this year. What would I have done if they had done as well as the eggplants? I probably would have had to buy another freezer. 🙂

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      • Two freezers wouldn’t be the worst thing, John! 🙂 I made the stuffed eggplants this weekend with nice small eggplants from the market – they were so good, and something I want to make again and again. We are getting another wave of beautiful eggplants here and I am so happy! I could only be happier if you were my neighbor and I could come over to eat with you often… Or you coming to our place!

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        • I am thrilled that you tried and enjoyed the stuffed eggplants, David. Yes, smaller eggplants work best and I used to bring a bag of them with me when I returned home for a visit. You’d think I brought caviar! My eggplants have just about run their course. I’ve about 6 ore to pick but there are no more blossoms. That’s OK. I certainly had more than my fair share this season and there are far worse problems to have … 🙂

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  18. I LOVE eggplant and I thought I had a lot of recipes to use it in my repertoire but after reading your post, I can’t wait to go shopping this weekend to get some eggplants. So many new and wonderful recipes to try!
    (Thank you ever so kindly for including one of mine)
    Your adventures with the tomatoes and eggplants remind me of my parent’s garden. Every single season there is one plant that has plans to take over the garden and then the world lol!
    Oh how I wish the weather here would allow me to grow things, I really miss gardening
    Thanks again for a great post John

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    • Goodness, Sawsan! As busy as you are, how would you find time to garden, too? You’re a wonder! There are many baba ganouj recipes circulating but your blog was the only place I visited. I was not joking when I called you “our resident Middle Eastern food expert.” Truly.
      Have a wonderful week.

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  19. another super-yummy post, Gianni, grazie… 🙂 long story, short: we’re all eggplant fans in our family and I prepare them about twice a week… the other day, I tried & tasted a super recipe: eggplant sliced fried in olive oil(of course!) with basil and fresh goat cheese – divine! 🙂

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  20. All of these look terrific! Boy oh boy – I sure could go for some of that eggplant lasagna right now!

    Your plants and eggplants look gorgeous in the photos. You ought to be very proud of these. 🙂

    One thing I’ve never tried is grilling eggplant, and why is that!

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    • When can you get here, Ruth? I can give you one of the frozen trays currently residing in my freezer. My power blinked last week and my first thought was, “My lasagna!” U think some of my friends were hoping that the power would have remained out for a couple days, knowing that we would have been feasting during the blackout. 🙂

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  21. I envy your eggpland “problem”. I have never had much luck growing eggplants for some reason. I always suspected it was because I was planting them too late or it was because our upstate NY growing season was too short. Regardless, I’m drooling over your eggplant harvest and the end results. Eggplant parm is my husbands favorite so I might have to give that recipe a try this fall.

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    • I’ve only tried to grow eggplant once before. That was last year and a disaster. Well, this year made up for it, that’s for sure. I don’t know whether it’s the same in Germany but here we can get eggplant year-round. Having a freezer full of eggplant dishes is convenient but really unnecessary. Now, olive and citrus trees would be wonderful growing in my back yard. I’d even build a little shed with 2 presses, one for oil and the other for juice. 🙂

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  22. I’m jealous of your eggplant harvest, I only had a few eggplants and they are the Japanese variety. Every way you’ve fixed it looks incredible to me. The boys are fond of eggplant dip, Ewan even likes it spread on a sandwich.

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    • That Ewan really knows what’s good! When I have it, I’ll spread it on everything. It seems like such a waste to restrict its use to only crackers or crisps. Besides, ever try to make baba ganouj for one? It’s just not possible, so, I’m left with a tub of dip in need of more uses. Sandwiches work for me. 🙂

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  23. I really wish there was a love button on WordPress because “like” doesn’t come close to the way I feel about eggplant. What I love about it is how creamy the flesh becomes as it is cooked and the textural contrast of the chewy skin is incredible. Then multiply it by hundreds, adding a sauce or a cheese or cheese sauce…simply put: culinary heaven. Your pics are some of my all-time favourite recipes. I’d like to add one to your repertoire: pickled, then marinated baby eggplant! A delicacy in Spain, we were introduced to it during our paella cooking class yesterday!

    It must have felt so strange to go back to Zia’s home without her there; strange and comforting, I suspect. I haven’t been back to my aunt and uncle’s home in Budapest since they’ve passed; to be honest, I’m a little afraid of the inevitable pouring of emotions, I’d probably make a fool of myself! How was the trip with your bird? Any exciting stories?

    The honey looks fabulous, I’ve sourced a bee farm near London (2 hours from TO) that I’ll ask my nephew to pick me up some honey and beeswax as he now lives in London, but I’ll do it in person during our Thanksgiving in October.

    Well, they just posted our gate, last leg of our journey is Paris. In one way it seems we haven’t been home for months, and another is that we just got here!!!

    Did you know Spain produces olive oil? We passed so many olive groves along the highway from Almeria to Seville, I was astounded. I purchased a small bottle of truffle infused Spanish olive oil (gotta watch the weight) which I already have recipes dancing around in my head!

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    • What a wonderful comment, Eva! You could easily have written this post. Your description of the joys of eating eggplant are my feelings exactly. The Jaime Oliver recipe I referenced both pickles and marinates the eggplant. It is very good but I hope you were given the Spanish recipe. I’d love to try it, too. It was bittersweet returning to Michigan and staying in Zia’s home and cooking in her kitchen without her watching, asking questions. If it’s at all possible, I know she was there with us. I served her favorite, pasta e fagioli. If that didn’t bring her around, nothing would. 🙂
      I am aware of Spain’s olive oil. It’s available here and a blogging friend that lives in Spain has described the people in her area harvesting the olives and then gathering at the local press to make their olive oil. How I’d love to have a taste of that oil. How fresh it must taste!
      Thank you, Eva, for always leaving such thoughtful comments. I know you’re home now and I’ve been enjoying your photos. Keep ’em coming! 🙂

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    • You’re apparently not alone, Amanda. Quite a few apparently have problems growing eggplant. I think I’ll have to try again next year if, for no other reason, to see if this year’s surprising crop was blind luck. I believe that caponata and ratatouille are similar dishes. Well, at least the caponate of northern Italy are similar. In Sicily, they use a variety of ingredients, often including anchovies. :

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    • Thanks, Stefan. You know English well enough to know that one could go crazy trying to make sense out of some of the naming conventions, idiomatic expressions, and pronunciations. “Ough” alone would drive a sane man to drink. Then again, with your new accreditation, at least you’d know a great wine to pick. 🙂
      Have a good week, my friend.

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    • Thanks, Frank. I’ love to live in a climate like Rome’s. Walking around the markets last May, I couldn’t help but marvel at the produce that was already available. Granted, some of it came from Sicily but we’ve nothing to compare here. Jealous doesn’t begin to describe my reaction. 🙂

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    • That’s been my problem, Kathryn. I’d pick the eggplant and run to my kitchen. Only later would I emerge and then I’d be ready to burst. This little routine was repeated again and again. Only now, with our dreary weather, has there been a break. I’ve still another half-dozen to pick but this cool spell has slowed them down — thankfully! 🙂

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  24. What beautiful eggplants!! Such gorgeous plants and those Black Beauties are quite properly named. I’m envious. I managed to get 2 small Japanese eggplant and that’s it. After looking at your collection of eggplant recipes, I can see that I’m going to have to pick up one or two. Thanks for all the eggplant ideas!

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    • Thanks, MJ. The glut is beginning to end, thankfully. I’ve got about 5 lbs of hatch chiles that I roasted and stored in the freezer. I’m just itching to work with them — and your blog will be my starting point, rest assured. 🙂

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  25. An aubergine bonanza! I am really impressed, especially since my eggplant harvest was an epic fail! I appreciate “anotherfoodieblogger’s” comment as I think it probably contains the answer to my disappointment. I don’t think I did enough to attract bees to the garden itself, although I have more tomatoes than I can give away at this point. I really love eggplant dishes and I’m able to purchase them year-round. I’m immediately attracted to the stuffed eggplant and can’t wait to taste that! The honey harvest sounds absolutely enthralling to me, John, as a very unique experience. Now I’m tasting baklava! 🙂 Great post with so many delicious options. I’d love to try each of them!

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    • Thank you so much, Debra. I have to agree with the comment you referenced. I admit, though, that I was surprised that none of my gardening neighbors planted zucchini. They grow everything else, especially cucumbers, and they’re all very generous — too generous. I had hoped to return the favor of gift cukes with gift zucchini. I came up short and no one likes eggplant. Well, if I have to plant 3 zucchini next year, I’ll have more than enough to make up for this year’s cukes. Is this what “generous to a fault” means? 🙂

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    • Thank you, Giovanna. Yes, not to toot my own horn, but the eggplant lasagna is a favorite. I’ve still got 2 trays stashed away in my freezer. If I can make it, I’d love to save each for one of our terribly cold winter days. I don’t know if I can wait that long. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  26. I LOVE eggplant we call the aubergine. Mine did exceptionally well this year too! But you were way more versatile with your recipes. I make ricotta salata every week – it is our go to cheese and very easy. I will bring some up when i come to get my honey! One more woofer to go then i am free! Have a great week! c

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  27. Now I believe you when you wrote you had plenty of aubergines 😉 – You surely know how to bring out the aubergine’s great potential… the stuffed one personally looks incredibly appealing.

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  28. Pingback: Eggplant Lasagna | from the Bartolini kitchens

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