Eggplant. People either love it or hate it. Cooked poorly, it can taste like a moldy sponge. Really. Cooked well, there’s nothing as incredible! Here are two methods that I use to get incredible eggplant every time.
Here’s the golden rule: DO NOT UNDERCOOK! Even when overcooked, eggplant is delicious… undercooked gets you that yucky spongy texture.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Wash eggplant and cut off the tips. Rub olive oil all over each eggplant and place on a baking tray. Some people say to pierce with a fork, some say don’t. I’ve done it each way and they both work… but I prefer not pierced. Bake for AT LEAST 45 minutes. After 45 minutes is up, check the eggplant and test their doneness with a fork… they should be incredibly soft. BEYOND soft. If they’re not, leave them for 10 more minutes and check again (and repeat). You basically can’t overcook it. When you press it with a fork it should feel like it’s deflating like a balloon.
Once it’s soft enough, remove from oven. Slice down the middle and spread out over a plate. Serve immediately. Topped with tahini is amazing… I’ve also used my pesto and curry caesar dressing and it’s incredible! In the picture, I have one half with the curry caesar and one half with a red pepper spread. Bete’avon!
I needed to try making eggplant a la shuk in Jerusalem! This is MUCH more unhealthy than baked, but it’s also incredibly delicious. Cut eggplant into cubes. Deep fry in oil (I use canola). Make sure that they are browning before removing. Pat dry with a paper towel and serve with salt and cumin sprinkled on top. Deep fried deliciousness!
Also, as far as I know, you can reuse deep frying oil. Just let it cook down and strain it into a bottle. Store in your fridge and use next time!