Saturday, March 13, 2010

Eggplant - To Salt or not to Salt

Eggplants seem to have a long season, and recently I have purchased some lovely small thin local eggplants. And no, you don't need to salt them.
The matter of whether or not to salt, seems to be uppermost, on the matter of eggplants.
I still salt large eggplants (other than for recipes such as Babaganoush or Punjabi Eggplant puree), particularly those with lots of seeds. Small eggplants do not need salting.
Salting eggplant takes out excess water and the bitterness of the eggplant.

  1. Slice or cut your eggplant as per your recipe. Sprinkle or rub salt into the eggplant. (You don't need to use good quality salt.)
  2. Places slices on top of each other in a colander.
  3. Put a sheet of plastic film over the eggplant, and place a large heavy object on top. I use a very heavy mortal and pestle. Place on a sink. (Sometimes the metal can react with the eggplant, so I always put plastic between.)
  4. Brown liquid should gradually come out.
  5. After around a half hour, take off the weight.
  6. At this point I quickly rinse off the salt and put the eggplant into a tea towel and sqeeze it tightly to take out any excess liquid.
  7. The eggplant should look half cooked.
  8. Now you are ready to cook with them, the easiest dish of course is to brush with olive oil and bake in the oven.