This shiny, purple veggie is the perfect base for meatless dishes or a welcomed addition to burgers, seafood dishes, and pastas. When it's raw, eggplant is spongy and plain, but once it's roasted, grilled, sautéed, or stir-fried, it comes into its full glory: tender, creamy flesh with a satisfying meatiness. That makes it ideal for meatless sandwiches or chicken Parmesan-style dishes. It's equally delicious when grilled and drizzled with a simple vinaigrette for a warm side salad or slow roasted with a sprinkling of fresh herbs and a squeeze of zesty lemon juice. Pick one up at the farmers' market or grocery store and see how it shines in these recipes.

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August 27, 2012