Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Sneaky Eggplant

Okay, okay, an eggplant is far from sneaky.  Especially with the skin still on.  But what if it is transformed?  It can reach new heights.  Let me explain. 

We received a lot of eggplant this summer.  Not from our garden--from a friend's.  Eggplant lasagna was great (except for the eggplant), and Ratatouille was fun to try (only because it was followed by the promise to see the movie of the same name).  I've been intending to fry up some eggplant, dipped in milk & egg and then in seasoned flour, but that just screamed "I am an eggplant!" and even though it's good stuff, I could just foresee a dinner time revolt taking place.  I had to come up with a more subtle approach.

I looked up fried eggplant in The Joy of Cooking by Irma Bambauer.  This cookbook has almost any recipe that you can think of.  My grandma Lena gave me this cookbook when I was in college, and it has been an awesome reference to have on hand.  Anyway, back to the eggplant.  I found a recipe for Eggplant Fritters.  I'm game to try new things.  After frying up a few I decided I had better try a nibble.  Then I had to try another.  And another.  They were good!  I'm glad I doubled the recipe or they may not have made it to the table.  I presented them simply as "Fritters" and the kids were eating them up.  I have concluded that I could probably get away with my kids eating most anything, if I can throw it into a fritter. 

Eggplant Fritters
1 eggplant, peeled and cubed
1 teaspoon vinegar

Add to a pot and cover with water.  Boil until tender.
Drain water, then mash and add:

3 Tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 egg

Mix well.  (Instead of mashing the eggplant and stirring in the other ingredients, I just threw everything in my blender and mixed it that way).

Deep fry spoonfuls of the batter.  Spoon batter into hot oil (365 degrees F),  cook until golden brown.  Turn fritter to brown other side.  If your oil is hot, it only takes a couple minutes to cook each one.  I was able to cook about 3 small fritters at a time.  As always is the case when using hot oil, be careful!  You might get burned!  (And make sure your pan isn't too full of oil, or it might overflow when you add your fritter batter). 

Place fritters on paper towel-lined plate to drain excess oil.  Eggplant transformation complete.  Enjoy! ~Lena


sheldon bartholomew said...

in italy i had those in a lasagna, just replace the noodles with those

Lena said...

We did that too. The lasagna was great, but the eggplant "noodles" were a bit different.