Thai-ed it and Liked it

Thank you to everyone who came out to the New Hope farmer’s market today. I had a wonderful time talking about the differences between regular and Thai eggplant. Many brave souls sampled the Thai eggplant raw, and yes, they liked it! Raw eggplant? That’s right, the Thai eggplant can be eaten raw while the traditional eggplant cannot due to its texture and bitterness. My 10-year-old son Evan loved it raw. In fact, he was helping me at the farmer’s market today and I had to ask him not to eat the samples he was cutting for others.

Here are some other differences you’ll find between to two. Thai eggplant is:

  • Small, roundish, and striped green and white. See my post for Whoa Mama Baba Ghanouj for a picture of this eggplant.
  • Easier to prepare. Just slice off the top, wash, and you’re ready to go. No gymnastics needed to draw out bitterness because…it’s not bitter.
  • Not bitter – the flavor is more mellow and buttery in flavor and texture. Because of this property, the Thai eggplant takes on warm subtle flavors better, like those found in some of the Indian spices I use.
  • Easy to store. Place in a paper bag in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. Keep them cool and dry.

How do you cook this eggplant you might ask. I applaud you for doing so. Besides the recipes I have on my blog, these little gems are delicious roasted. Just trim, wash, and coat with olive oil, salt, and pepper. If you have a variety of sizes, half or quarter some so they cook at the same rate. Put in a preheated oven at 475-500 degrees F for about 15-20 mins. or until golden brown and fragrant. Eat as a simple side dish. If you don’t want to fire up the oven, fire up the grill. Put the coated eggplant in aluminum foil and pop them on the grill, med-low heat, until they begin to brown and break down. YUM YUM

I’ll be performing a cooking demo of the Whoa Mama Baba Ghanouj and Eggplant Curry in a Hurry recipes at 10 and 11 a.m. at the Farmer’s Market in New Hope on Saturday, September 11th. I’ve included the address below. The farmer’s market is in the Kmart parking lot and goes until Oct 16th – Saturdays from 8-1 pm. I hope to see many people there learning to use this great ingredient.

4300 Xylon Avenue North, New Hope, MN

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