Posted by: cris | June 24, 2013

Talong (Eggplant)

Talong, called Eggplant in American English, aubergine in British English and French, and its scientific name is Solanum melongena (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eggplant)

We Filipinos, normally typecast the eggplant as purple in color and elongated. But do you know there are different colors and shape of eggplants? There are long, ovoid/round eggplants and color range from white, yellow, green, reddish purple and dark purple.

Though others may be allergic to eggplant, it is still loved by a lot of people, which includes me (that may not be surprising because I love eating, hehehe). Eggplant contains vitamins and minerals and important anthocyanin phytonutrient found in the skin called nasunin. According to http://www.whfoods.com/ Nasunin is an antioxidant and free radical scavenger. Eggplants are a good source of Vitamins A, B, C, calcium, phosphorous and iron according to http://stuartxchange.org. StuartXchange also lists a number of medicinal uses of this ordinary vegetable as well as new studies for eggplants.

Here are a few recipes for eggplant:

A. Tortang Talong (http://www.filipinorecipesite.com/filipino-recipes/tortang-talong-eggplant-omelet.html)

Ingredients:
2 to 4 talong (eggplants), average size
2 to 3 eggs, beaten
salt and pepper, to taste
oil, for frying

Cooking Procedures :
Broil eggplants until tender (the skins are charred and blister appears).
Once cool, peel off the skins of the eggplant and retain the crown and the stem. Gently flatten its meat by using the back of a fork. Set aside.
In a bowl, beat the eggs and season with salt and pepper.
In a skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Dip each eggplant, one at a time into the egg mixture. Gently bring the bowl near the skillet and tip, lowering the eggplant onto the heated oil.
Fry until golden brown on one side, then turn and brown the other. Drain on paper towels. Keep warm and serve.

Note: I usually add minced onions to the batter. If ground pork is available, i saute it before adding to the batter.And if this is the case, I usually place the eggplant in a saucer then add the batter before i put it in the frying pan.

B. Kinilaw na Talong (eggplant salad) http://bisayajudkaayo.blogspot.com/2009/09/kinilaw-na-talong-eggplant-salad.html

1. Poke some holes to the eggplant using a fork.
2. Grill them until skins will burn, keep turning around to make sure every skin are cooked or charred. Eggplants are cooked when they are soft.
3. Let them cool then start peeling off the charred skin making sure to take out those black particles from the charred skin.
4. Chop eggplants into cubes or shred them.
5. Add chopped tomatoes, sweet onions, scallions, garlic, ginger and Thai bird chili if you want it spicy and hot.
6. Add salt and vinegar, i like to use Datu Puti (Filipino Vinegar) or apple cider vinegar.
Serve with the bbq or fried fish.

Note: for those who can live without meat/fish this is already complete. Here in our place, we add coconut sap vinegar.

C. Fried eggplant chips (http://www.theheights.sa.edu.au/documents/kitchen/eggplantchips.pdf)

Ingredients:

· 4 large eggplants · 4 cups water
· salt · 1 tsp turmeric
· 5 cups plain flour · oil for frying

Procedure:
1. Wash, then slice eggplants into 1 cm slices.
2. Lay slices out onto a large chopping board and lightly salt
one side of eggplant. (This will absorb any water in the
eggplant and remove any bitterness.)
3. Place 2 cups of flour in a large bowl and coat eggplant slices
with flour. (This will absorb any remaining moisture.)
4. In another bowl combine 3 cups flour, turmeric and 4 cups
of water and whisk well to make a thickish, yellow batter.
5. Heat 2 large frying pans and add a generous amount of oil.
6. Dip eggplant into batter, drip off excess, then gently place
into pan. Fry until golden brown on both sides

Note: for gluten sensitive people, maybe rice flour is a good susbstitute.


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