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Eggplant

SCIENTIFIC NAME

Solanum melongena

CLASSIFICATION

Vegetable

SEASON

January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, December

About

There is a little trick to cooking eggplant and once you know it, you will never stop eating it! Eggplant (also known as eggfruit or aubergines) need to be salted to draw out the bitter juices. You cut the eggplant in slices (about 1cm) thick, sprinkle fine salt on both sides and watch! After about 15-20 minutes you will see quite a lot of liquid forming on the eggplant slices. Wash this liquid off, and you have just washed away all the bitterness of an eggplant. Once you’ve done this eggplant can be used in so many things and is an absolute staple of the Mediterranean diet.

Eggplant is a Mediterranean climate vegetable and they are grown all over WA, from Carnarvon in Winter to the south west in summer, they are available throughout the year. Most eggplant in WA is grown in the field, however some is grown hydroponically in hothouses.

Varieties
Eggplant is normally dark purple all over, but you can get white eggplant and variegated (white and purple) eggplant. Lebanese eggplants are shorter and thinner.

Look for firm, bright shiny skinned fruit. Eggplant can be stored in the refrigerator or a cool dark place and will last for 3-4 days. Once the eggplant is cut it needs to be used quickly. The flesh of an eggplant oxidises quickly (ie turns brown) but this won’t affect the eating quality.

Eggplant (also known as eggfruit or aubergines) need to be salted to draw out the bitter juices. Cut the eggplant in slices (about 1cm) thick, sprinkle fine salt on both sides and watch! After about 20 minutes you will see quite a lot of liquid forming on the eggplant slices. Wash this liquid off, and you have just washed away all the bitterness of an eggplant. Once you’ve completed this, they are great for curries, stirfrys and famous recipes like ratatouille and moussaka. Thinly sliced eggplant makes for fantastic eggplant schnitzel and halved Lebanese eggplants on the BBQ will be an instant hit.

For the more adventurous types there are 100s of different eggplant chutney recipes available – find your favourite!

Eggplant (also known as eggfruit or aubergines) need to be salted to draw out the bitter juices. Cut the eggplant in slices (about 1cm) thick, sprinkle fine salt on both sides and watch! After about 20 minutes you will see quite a lot of liquid forming on the eggplant slices. Wash this liquid off, and you have just washed away all the bitterness of an eggplant. Once you’ve completed this, they are great for curries, stirfrys and famous recipes like ratatouille and moussaka. Thinly sliced eggplant makes for fantastic eggplant schnitzel and halved Lebanese eggplants on the BBQ will be an instant hit.

For the more adventurous types there are 100s of different eggplant chutney recipes available – find your favourite!

Eggplant is a good source of Vitamin K, Thiamin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Potassium and Manganese, and a very good source of Dietary Fibre. While eggplant has all the usual super good stuff you find in most fresh produce, recently there has been particular focus on a compound called nasunin, found in the eggplant peel that suggests it is a potent anti-oxidant but may also protect brain cell membranes from damage.

EGGPLANT
Nutrient Value per 100 g
Proximates
Energy, including dietary fibre 89 kJ
Moisture 92.8 g
Protein 1 g
Nitrogen 0.17 g
Fat 0.3 g
Ash 0.5 g
Dietary fibre 2.5 g
Fructose 1 g
Glucose 1.3 g
Surcose 0.1 g
Total sugars 2.4 g
Available carbohydrate, without sugar alcohols 2.4 g
Available carbohydrate, with sugar alcohols 2.4 g
Organic Acids
Malic acid 0.1 g
Minerals
Calcium (Ca) 22 mg
Copper (Cu) 0.081 mg
Iron (Fe) 0.19 mg
Magnesium (Mg) 8 mg
Manganese (Mn) 0.16 mg
Molybdenum (Mo) 11.7 mg
Phosohorus(P) 28 mg
Potassium (K) 160 mg
Selenium (Se) 0 ug
Sodium (Na) 5 mg
Zinc (Zn) 0.09 mg
Vitamins
Thiamin (B1) 0.047 mg
Riboflavin (B2) 0.038 mg
Niacin (B3) 0.66 mg
Niacin Equivalents 0.85 mg
Pantothenic acid (B5) 0.24 mg
Puridoxine (B6) 1.81 mg
Biotin (B7) 2.3 mg
Folate, natural 0 ug
Total folates 0 ug
Dietary folate equivalents 0 ug
Alpha carotene 14 ug
Beta carotene 39 ug
Cryphoxanthin 0 ug
Beta carotene equivalents 46 ug
Retinol equivalents 8 ug
Vitamin C 3 mg
Vitamin E 2.99 mg
Amino Acids
Tryptophan (mg/g N) 68 MN
Tryptophan (mg) 11 mg