Eggplant

Eggplant Parmigiana Sub

At 90, my mom is aging rapidly. Here she was a couple of years ago after the slide began but while she was still fairly alert (at least she still knew who I was).

Before she got sick, one of the foods she loved, but rarely treated herself to, was eggplant parmigiana subs. She especially liked the subs at our local pizza shop here in Dover. It was a major treat when she would visit and we would go out for our eggplant parmigiana subs. So when I picked up a whole bunch of eggplants on the farm in the Catskills, I decided to use some to make eggplant parmigiana subs in her honor.

Oh, she would have loved these. The hoagie rolls were the perfect texture to meld with the sauce and create just the right amount of bread to eggplant to sauce in each bite.

My words of advice, make sure the eggplant is really cooked through and soft. Over-cooked is better than undercooked.

Eggplant Parmigiana Sub

from FoodNetwork.com

1 large firm eggplant

3 large eggs (from Farmer Kim)

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

4 cups Italian seasoned bread crumbs

1/2 cup olive oil, approximately

6 Italian style hoagie rolls, warmed in a preheated 350 degree F oven for 5 minutes before serving

1 cup part-skim Mozzarella, shredded

2 cups prepared marinara sauce, warm

Directions

Slice the eggplant crosswise about 1/4 to 3/8-inch thick – make slices as consistent as possible. If the base of the eggplant is very large, cut it in half lengthwise. Soak the sliced eggplant in a large bowl of warm, salted water for 1 to 2 hours. Make sure the eggplant is completely submerged in the salt water.

Scramble the 3 eggs with salt and pepper to make an egg wash. Remove eggplant slices from the salt bath, shake off excess moisture, and dip into egg wash. Then dip the eggplant slices, 1 at a time, into a flat plate filled with seasoned bread crumbs, covering all surfaces, and set aside. Continue breading the eggplant until all slices are done. Discard excess egg wash and bread crumbs.

In a large skillet over medium-high heat, add enough olive oil to lightly coat the bottom of the pan and allow it to heat up. (Add more oil as necessary during cooking.)

Add the breaded eggplant slices to the pan, cover and cook until you begin to see the eggplant become translucent, about 5 minutes. If it begins to burn, lower heat and allow it to cook slowly. Using a large spatula, turn eggplant onto the other side and cook 1 to 2 more minutes with the lid on until eggplant is completely tender.

When eggplant is completely cooked, remove from frying pan and place onto paper towels to blot any excess oil.

Place 2 or 3 eggplant slices onto warmed Italian roll, top with shredded mozzarella cheese, then warm marinara sauce.

Enjoy! Makes 6.

Makes 6.

Categories: Eggplant, Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe, Vegetarian | 2 Comments

Khoresh Bademjun (Persian Eggplant Stew) Vegetarian Version

Not only did we pick berries in the Catskills, we also picked eggplants (yes, pick-you-own eggplants!). What a happy thing!

So we are “eggplanting” it out this week.  My vegetarian daughter is home so, I created this version of khoresh bademjun for her. Needless to say, she was thrilled.

Khoresh Bademjun (Persian Eggplant Stew) Vegetarian Version

1 large eggplant, 2 medium eggplants, or the equivalent amount of small eggplants

3 Tbsp canola oil

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

12 oz soy granules

1 onion chopped

1 tsp turmeric

1/2 tsp kosher salt

1 can diced tomatoes or the equivalent amount of fresh tomatoes, peeled and chopped, about 2 large (the tomatoes were from my garden)

1 to 1 1/2 cups hot water

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper, drizzle with 1 Tbsp oil.

Peel and slice the eggplant lengthwise, about 1/2” thick.  Place on the baking sheet and drizzle with 1 Tbsp oil.  Sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper. Bake for 30 – 40 minutes, turning every 10 minutes until browned. Remove from oven.

In a large skillet, heat the other 1 Tbsp oil. Add the soy granules and onions and cook for about 5 minutes.

Add a layer of tomatoes. Add the water then cover with a layer of eggplants, covering the tomatoes and soy mixture as completely as possible.

Cover and cook over very low heat for about 2 hours, check after 1 hour to see if more water is needed.

Serve with rice and pickled vegetables.   Enjoy!

Serves 4.

Categories: Eggplant, Kosher, Main Dish, Persian, Recipe, Tomatoes, Vegetarian | Leave a comment

Escalivada (Catalan Roast Vegetables)

I am in love!

I want to put these vegetables on everything! And yes, we were continuing our Spanish theme from Passover.

It was so simple. Rub on some oil, sprinkle with salt, wrap in aluminum foil, then bake. Unwrap, peel, chop and sprinkle with olive oil, salt and sherry vinegar. And, ta da! A bowl full of deliciousness!

I had made a stuffed sourdough flatbread- what a perfect base for the vegetables, and a fabulous lunch (or breakfast).

Escalivada (Catalan Roast Vegetables)

from Food 52

2 bell peppers (preferably one red and one yellow)
1 medium eggplant
1 small onion
Olive oil (about 1/2 cup or so)
Salt
Sherry vinegar
Bread, for serving

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350° F.

Wash and dry the vegetables, rub them with olive oil, sprinkle them with a few pinches of salt, and wrap them in foil. Place on a baking sheet, and roast for 2 hours.

Remove from the oven and let cool.

Peel the skins off of the eggplant and the peppers. Slice the vegetables into 1/2- to 1-inch slices.

Add a pinch of salt, drizzle generously with oil, and add a splash of sherry vinegar — start with a teaspoon or two, taste, and adjust to your liking.

Serve with bread, cheese, meat, fish, eggs, or just eat them!

Serves 4-6 as an appetizer or part of a lunch.

Categories: Eggplant, Green Peppers, Kosher, Passover, Recipe, Vegetarian | Leave a comment

Khoresh Bademjun (Persian Eggplant Stew) without the oil, “Take 2”

During a visit to my friend in San Diego, she took me to this wonderful international food market, Harvest. After being drawn in by the warm, fresh flatbreads, I spotted the warm foods…persian dish after persian dish! I was home! After explaining all the dishes to my friend, and telling her that most of them are on my blog, I went off to find the spices and herbs I was running low on.

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I was also inspired to once again refine my khoresh bademjun – our beloved eggplant stew.

I had already figured out how to make it without frying the eggplant and have the taste come out right, but it didn’t look right with the cubed eggplant.

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So, I decided to try again, could I bake slices of eggplant? Perhaps if I cut them thicker, about 1/2″ thick. That worked, they baked up well.

So, I was able to arrange and cook the dish as I would with fried eggplant slices.

Success! Eggplant Bademjun – healthy and delicious!

Khoresh Bademjun (Persian Eggplant Stew) without the oil “Take 2”

2 medium eggplants, or the equivalent amount of small eggplants

Kosher Salt

3 Tbsp Canola Oil, divided

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 lb chicken or beef, cut into bite-sized pieces

1 onion chopped

1/2 tsp turmeric

1/2 tsp kosher salt

1 can diced tomatoes or the equivalent amount of fresh tomatoes, peeled and chopped, about 2 large

1/2 cup hot water

Directions

Preheat the oven to 425F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, drizzle with 1 Tbsp oil.

Peel and slice the eggplant lengthwise, about 1/2” thick.  Place on the baking sheet and drizzle with 1 Tbsp oil.  Sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper.

Bake for 30 – 40 minutes, turning every 10 minutes until browned. Remove from oven.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat the other 1 Tbsp oil. Add the chicken or beef and onions. Brown on all sides – do not overcook.  After the meat is browned add turmeric and salt. Mix to combine.

Add a layer of tomatoes.

Add the water then cover with a layer of eggplants, covering the tomatoes and meat as completely as possible.

Cover and cook over very low heat for about 2 hours, check after 1 hour to see if more water is needed.

Serve with rice and pickled vegetables.   Enjoy!

Serves 4 – 6.

 

 

 

 

Categories: Eggplant, Kosher, Main Dish, Persian, Recipe | 2 Comments

Mirza Qasemi

After refining my kabob recipe, it was time to delve blindly into a Persian dish I have never had, little less even seen a picture for. But the ingredients are good as well as the prescribed cooking method, so I figured I would try…

It all started with eggplant from my garden.

Add in tomatoes from my garden and eggs from farmer Kim. Then, while making this I also made a whole wheat version of taftoon, a Persian flatbread.

It was intense to do both, and as the Mirza Qasemi took shape I had to ask my husband, “does this look right?” “Does this taste right?” The answer to both was “yes” so here it is Mirza Qasemi a la Andrea’s kitchen.

It was even better than I had hoped – especially since I had no idea what I was shooting for, I just used my instincts and aimed for – tasting really good. Phew! It worked!

Mirza Qasemi

5-6 small eggplants (from the garden)

4 cloves of garlic, minced

3 eggs (from Farmer Kim)

2 medium tomatoes (from the garden), cut a small “x” into the bottom of each tomato

3 Tbsp canola oil

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Directions

Heat the oven to 400F.  Bake the eggplant until they are soft, about 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool.

Remove the peel and cut off the stems. Chop.

Meanwhile, bring a small pot of water to boil and blanch the tomatoes for 2 minutes.  Drain and let cool slightly.  Peel the tomatoes and chop.

Heat a skillet over medium-high heat,  cook the garlic for 1 minute.  Add eggplant and cook for 3 – 4 minutes. Add tomatoes,salt and pepper and cook until the excess water cooks off, about 5 – 10 minutes.

Beat the eggs well with a fork and add to the eggplants.  Mix and fry for 5 minutes.

Serve with rice or flatbread. Enjoy!

Serves 4

Categories: Eggplant, Kosher, Persian, Recipe, Tomatoes, Vegetarian | 5 Comments

Eggplant and Butternut Squash Tagine with Chickpeas and Raisins

We attended the Delaware Wine and Beer Festival last week and, aside from some new beverages, we discovered a new farm – Suzuki Farms in Delmar, Delaware.  They specialize in Japanese vegetables.

We picked up some eggplants and some delicious salad dressing that his wife made. I used a could of the eggplants with a butternut squash from my garden  in  a moroccan stew (tagine).It is called a tagine because of the traditional dish is it cooked in. I happen to have a tagine, but it can calso be made in a dutch oven or other covered pot. I do love my tagine, but have still have to learn how much to cut back the liquid, I tend to have overflows every time I use it.  Oh well, some day I will figure it out. Why do I ove it, the stews stay incredibly moist and tender.

 

To add some texture, and additional flavor, to the stew, you make a mix for parsley, almonds and raisins.

Put it all together and serve it on top of couscous.  A tasty treat for an autumn evening.

Eggplant and Butternut Squash Tagine with Chickpeas and Raisins

From Williams -Sonoma

1 1/2 lb. butternut squash (from the garden)

1 lb. slender eggplant (locally grown)

1 1/2 Tbs. olive oil

1 yellow onion, chopped

1 garlic clove, minced

2 Tbs. ras el hanout  (see recipe below)

1/2 tsp. ground turmeric

1/2 tsp. salt, plus more, to taste

1 can (14 1/2 oz.) chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1 1/2 cups vegetable broth

1 1/2 tsp. fresh lemon juice and 1/8 tsp salt

1 1/2 tsp. fresh lemon juice

Freshly ground pepper, to taste

1/2 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley  (from the garden)

1/2 cup sliced almonds (I only had slovered), toasted

1/4 cup raisins or currants

Directions

Peel and halve the butternut squash, scoop out the seeds and cut the flesh into 1-inch chunks.

Trim the eggplant and cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks.


In a large pot over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until the onion is soft, about 5 minutes.

Stir in the ras el hanout, turmeric and the 1/2 tsp. salt and cook for 1 minute.

Add the squash, eggplant, chickpeas, broth and lemon with salt and bring to a boil.

Reduce the heat to maintain a simmer, cover and cook until the squash and eggplant are tender, about 20 minutes. Stir in the lemon juice and season with salt and pepper.


In a small bowl, stir together the parsley, almonds and raisins.

Stir two-thirds of the parsley mixture into the tagine,

then sprinkle the remaining mixture on top. Serve immediately with couscous. Enjoy!

Serves 4.

 

Ras El Hanout

from Gourmet April 1998

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1 teaspoon salt

3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground coriander seeds

1/2 teaspoon cayenne

1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

Directions

In a small bowl whisk together all ingredients until combined well. Spice blend keeps in an airtight container at cool room temperature 1 month.

 

Categories: Butternut Squash, Eggplant, Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe, Vegetarian | Leave a comment

Khoresh Bademjun va Kadoo (Persian Eggplant & Zucchini Stew)

I had a medium-sized eggplant from a local farmer and  a tiny one from my garden, but not enough for Khoresh Bademjun. What to do? I really wanted Persian food. Of course, I also had plenty of zucchini from my garden. Why not try a Khoresh (stew) sing both vegetables?

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Since our vegetarian daughter was home, no meat would go in this dish.  So I needed to to make sure there would be enough flavor and texture to the dish.  Layering was my approach.  First the fried onions and turmeric, topping that with the sliced tomatoes, then fried zucchini.

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Finally, it all got sealed in by the fried eggplant.

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And cooked until the flavors all blended together.  We dove in so fast that I did not get any pictures of the final plates before they were eaten. Since they really looked a lot like my other Khoresh Bademjuns, here is one of those to give you the idea….

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This was an experiment that went very well.  I will be making this and trying more variations on it in the future. This is Happy Food.

Khoresh Bademjun va Kadoo (Persian Eggplant & Zucchini Stew)

Canola oil

1 medium eggplant (plus one tiny one from the garden), peeled and sliced about 1/4″ thick

1 large or 2 medium zucchini, cut into 1 1/2 to 2 ” chunks (from the garden)

1 large onion, sliced

1/2 tsp turmeric

3 tomatoes, sliced (from the garden)

1/2 cup water

Kosher salt

Directions

Place the eggplant in a colander and sprinkle with a good amount of salt.  Let sit for 20 – 30 minutes. Rinse off the salt and dry the slices.

In the meantime, place about 1/4 inch of oil in a large skillet (I like to use cast iron, but any non-stick will do).  Heat over medium-high heat.  Cook the zucchini in batches until lightly browned and cooked through, flipping once through cooking. Drain on paper towels. Sprinkle lightly with salt.

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Place the onion in the skillet, sprinkle with the turmeric and salt and cook until golden brown. Drain on paper towels and set aside.

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Now, Fry the eggplant, in batches, until golden browned on each side, about 3 – 4 minutes per side.  Note:  it is preferable to overcook the eggplant rather than undercook it. Drain on paper towels. Sprinkle lightly with salt.

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Drain the excess oil and wipe the skillet.  Begin layering with the onions, then the slices of tomatoes.

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Add the zucchini.

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Place the eggplant on top to seal the dish as much as possible.

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Cover and cook over medium heat for 1 hour.

Serve with rice and pickles.  Enjoy!

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Serves 4.

 

Categories: Eggplant, Kosher, Main Dish, Persian, Recipe, Vegetarian, Zucchini | 1 Comment

Skillet Eggplant and Kale Pizza

One of my favorite things in my garden is when  have enough eggplant to make something.  It has been a rough few years for eggplant plants, they have been attacked by bugs early on.  This year, however, has been a good one, very few bugs, so the eggplants have been able to grow.  Hopefully this is the start of my eggplant season.

It is also the tail end of my kale season. Just one more dish after this. I will miss the kale.

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Pizza from scratch, skillet pizza from scratch…definitely a winner. But make a homemade sauce and top them with the eggplant and kale from my garden and we had a delicious treat. And oh so pretty!

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The crust is light and airy, the eggplant roasted so a soft perfection and the kale sauteed with garlic – honestly, what is there NOT to like?

Skillet Eggplant and Kale Pizza

adapted from Martha Stewart Magazine Skillet Pizza with Eggplant and Greens

DOUGH

  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 1 teaspoon instant dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

SAUCE

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Pinch of red-pepper flakes
  • 1/2 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

TOPPINGS

  • 1 eggplant (or 12 ounces small eggplants), stemmed and cut lengthwise into 1-inch-thick slices (from the garden)
  • Coarse salt
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 bunch kale, stems removed, cut into 2-inch pieces (from the garden)
  • 8 ounces fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced and ripped
  • 3 ounces provolone, thinly sliced and ripped
  • Fresh oregano leaves (from the garden)

Directions

Dough: Stir together flour, salt, yeast, and 1 1/4 cups water in a large bowl until dough is very sticky. Cover with plastic wrap; let stand 12 to 18 hours at room temperature.

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Sprinkle dough with flour. Divide in half. Divide oil between two 10-inch ovenproof nonstick skillets (preferably cast iron). Swirl to coat. Add dough to each skillet; turn to coat with oil. Gently flatten dough with your hand. Cover; let rise in a warm spot until doubled in bulk, about 2 hours.

Sauce: Meanwhile, heat oil in a medium pot over medium heat. Add pepper flakes and onion. Cook, stirring, until onion is tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Add tomatoes and juices. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until slightly reduced, about 20 minutes.

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Let cool slightly. Puree sauce in a blender, in batches (to avoid filling jar more than halfway), until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.

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Toppings: Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place eggplant in a colander; season with salt. Let stand 30 minutes.

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Rinse eggplant, drain, and pat dry. Arrange on a baking sheet; brush with 2 tablespoons oil. Roast, turning once, until very tender, about 25 minutes. Let cool slightly, then cut into 1/2-inch pieces.

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Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic; cook, stirring, until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add chard in batches with 1 to 2 tablespoons water. Cook, stirring, until just wilted, about 5 minutes. Season with salt. Let cool.

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Preheat oven to 475 degrees with rack in lower third. For each pizza, press dough until it touches edge of skillet. Ladle 3/4 cup sauce over dough, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Top with 3 ounces cheese. Add 1/2 cup each chard and eggplant. Top with another 3 ounces cheese.

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Bake until crust is golden brown and cheese is melted, about 18 minutes. Sprinkle with oregano; serve and enjoy.

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Makes 2 10″ pizzas.
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Categories: Eggplant, Kale, Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe, Vegetarian | 1 Comment

Persian Eggplant and Okra Stew

The cool summer wreaked havoc on my tomatoes and okra; I had a harvest, but it was very small.  It totally destroyed my eggplants, I did not even get one.  I was so looking forward to trying this recipe, but kept waiting to see if I would get enough okra.  Finally, I decided to supplement both the okra and the eggplant with ones local farmers had better luck with than I did.

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Taste-wise, this is very similar to my Khoresh Bademjun – Eggplant Stew.  But the approach and texture is different.  This is more like the Khoresh Bademjun my sister-in-law makes.  I liked this, a lot.  I think I prefer mine, but when I want a change of pace, I will definitely come back to this approach.

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Persian Eggplant and Okra Stew

from Turmeric and Saffon

1 1/2 pound meat (lamb or beef), washed, trimmed and cubed
8 small size eggplants, peeled, leave whole or cut in half
1 pound okra, wash and trim the top
1-2 large tomatoes, skin removed and finely diced (from the garden)
2 large onions, finely chopped
2-3 garlic cloves, minced (from the garden)
2-3 freshly squeezed lime juice
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon turmeric
A pinch of red pepper *optional
Salt and pepper to taste
Oil
Water

Directions

Place peeled eggplants in a colander, sprinkle with salt and let them drain for a couple of hours before cooking.

Heat 1/2 a cup of vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat and fry the eggplants until golden brown. Remove and place fried eggplants on a paper towel.

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In the same skillet fry okra in 2-3 tablespoons of oil on medium heat until lightly brown. Set aside.

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In a large stew pot saute the chopped onions on medium-high heat until golden brown. Add a teaspoon of turmeric powder. Stir well, add the minced garlic and saute for another few minutes.

Add the meat, salt, pepper and brown the meat on all sides.

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Add the chopped tomatoes, tomato paste and add enough water to cover the meat by a couple of inches. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, cover and cook for an hour on medium-low heat or until the meat is tender.

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Add the lime juice to the stew, stir and gently place the fried eggplants and okra in the pot. Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt, pepper and lime juice. Add a little more water if necessary. Cover and simmer for another 30-40 minutes on low heat.

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To serve, gently spoon the stew in a large serving bowl. Serve hot with rice. Enjoy!

Serves 4-6

 

 

 

 

Categories: Eggplant, Kosher, Main Dish, Okra, Persian, Recipe, Tomatoes | 1 Comment

Khoresh Bademjun (Persian Eggplant Stew) – Revisited Without all the Oil

As I have said before, Khoresh Bademjun is pretty much the most popular meal in my household. The only thing that keeps me from making it more often is all the oil used in frying the eggplant. So, when I made the Eggplant and Tomato Stew with Pomegranate Molasses and prepared the eggplant by roasting rather than frying, I was very happy when the eggplant came out tasting just as good as it did fried.  I love fried eggplant, so this was quite a surprise to me.  A pleasant one.

So it was time to try the oven roasted approach to Khoresh Bademjun.

20140801-190421-68661647.jpgThe big test was my husband.  He loves his Khoresh Bademjun. How would he like my new, healthier version?

20140801-190425-68665184.jpgI am quite pleased to report that he said it tasted pretty much the same and that this approach was fine with him.  Now we will get all the yummy goodness of eggplant without the oil. Strike one up for healthy eating!!

Khoresh Bademjun (Persian Eggplant Stew) – Revisited Without All the Oil

 2 medium eggplants, or the equivalent amount of small eggplants Kosher Salt

2 Tbsp Canola Oil

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 lb chicken or beef, cut into bite-sized pieces

1 onion chopped

1/2 tsp turmeric

1/2 tsp kosher salt

1 can diced tomatoes or, as I used today, the equivalent amount of fresh tomatoes, peeled and chopped, about 2 large (from the garden)

1/2 cup hot water

Directions

 Preheat the oven to 425F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Peel and dice the eggplant.  Place on the baking sheet and drizzle with 1 Tbsp oil.  Sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper.

20140801-190419-68659640.jpgBake for 40 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Remove from oven.

20140801-190421-68661647.jpgMeanwhile, in a large skillet, heat the other 1 Tbsp oil.  Add the chicken or beef and onions. Brown on all sides – do not overcook.  After the meat is browned add turmeric and salt. Mix to combine.

20140801-190419-68659973.jpgAdd a layer of tomatoes.

20140801-190422-68662416.jpgAdd the water then cover with a layer of eggplants, covering the tomatoes and meat as completely as possible.

20140801-190422-68662956.jpgCover and cook over very low heat for about 2 hours, check after 1 hour to see if more water is needed.

20140801-190423-68663432.jpgServe with rice and pickled vegetables.   Enjoy!

20140801-190424-68664199.jpgServes 4.

Categories: Eggplant, Kosher, Main Dish, Persian, Recipe, Tomatoes | 2 Comments

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