This shiny, purple veggie is the perfect base for meatless dishes or a welcomed addition to burgers, seafood dishes, and pastas. Pick one up at the farmers' market or grocery store and see how it shines in these recipes.
A cousin to tomatoes, peppers, and potatoes, the eggplant gets its name from the first varieties of its kind, which were white, round, and egg-size. Now they also come in green and deep purple and are typically much larger. Although available year-round, they are most abundant from July to October. Look for firm eggplants that feel heavy for their size and have smooth, shiny skins and bright green stems. Try some of the recipes in this gallery for maximizing tastiness while cooking with eggplant.
Our Roasted Eggplants with Herbs recipe is a classic example of the delectable qualities of this veggie. This simple preparation yields irresistible results. Use very firm, small eggplants; if young and fresh enough, they won't be bitter.
Transform sandwich night with this hearty veggie-laden stacker. You can peel the eggplant, but the sandwiches are prettier with the deep purple skin intact.
This perfect version of a classic Italian meatless dinner, Parmigiana, will quickly become a family favorite. Add a glass of vino for a Sicilian-style date night or a scoop of gelato for a kid-friendly Italian night.
Leftover eggplant puree from this recipe is perfect as a dip for toasted pita wedges. Marmite is a concentrated yeast paste that helps give this burger meaty flavor—find it in supermarket baking aisles and health food stores. Use sesame-poppy seed buns.
Traditional falafel is made from seasoned, mashed chickpeas that are shaped into patties and deep-fried. Here we use the same components to make a tasty filling for eggplants, baked and topped with a deliciously nutty sauce.
Tian, a French word used throughout Provence, refers to both a shallow cooking vessel and the food cooked in it. This veggie and breadcrumb casserole is perfect for a weeknight dinner and great reheated the next day too!
Fire up the grill – this salad is a perfect side for grilled steak, chicken, or shrimp. Although you can successfully prepare this colorful end-of-summer salad on a gas grill, charcoal will imbue the vegetables with extra flavor.
Salting the eggplant draws out some of the bitter flavor and moisture. Less moisture in turn minimizes the amount of oil the eggplant will absorb. This dish has a crispy crackerlike crust, a nice contrast to the tender eggplant.
The perfect pairing to a bowl of sticky rice, this savory, garlicky paste gets toasty flavor from roasted eggplant and blackened garlic and peppers. In more traditional versions, you grill ingredients over charcoal for deeper flavor.
In this meatless version of the classic Greek dish, bulgur wheat stands in for ground meat in a spiced tomato filling surrounded by eggplant layers and topped with a béchamel sauce. The eggplant and bulgur pack this dish with fiber. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley.
The addition of chicken to a quick ratatouille makes a great-tasting and satisfying pizza when put on a crust. Serve with a green salad for a light weekday meal.
You can assemble and refrigerate the eggplant halves up to a day in advance, then bake just before serving. If the stuffed eggplants are cold, you may need to cook them an extra five minutes.