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Posts Tagged ‘side’

Eggplants have to be my new favorite “different” veggie.  Just recently, I’ve discovered how to properly prepare eggplants so that they are not bitter, but soft and buttery instead.  If all you can find are the teardrop shaped deep purple specimens, they can go from bitter to gussied up for the pan in no time.  The trick is to salt out the bitterness. 

Cut your eggplant in half, lengthwise, sprinkle on salt to cover the flesh which is now exposed.  Place the two halves, cut side down, on a cookie rack (you can also balance them on two short glasses or cans if you don’t have a baking rack).  The idea is to let the eggplant release water.  The water carries the bitterness with it.  Leave the eggplant to sweat while you make a cup of joe or tea.

Water should have accumulated underneath the eggplant by now (give them about 15 minutes).  Wash off the surfaces with just a tiny bit of running water, then pat dry.  There, eggplant ready to dice!  You can apply the exact same method to zucchini squash.

  • olive oil
  • 1 purple eggplant, diced
  • 1 zucchini, diced
  • 1 small yellow onion, thick slices
  • 1 small red bell pepper, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3-4 roma tomatoes, diced roughly
  • sea salt
  • fresh cracked pepper
  • 1 lemon

Here is how I made this dish… Sauté diced eggplant in olive oil.  Add sea salt as you turn the cubes over.  Just as the eggplant starts to soften and has a bit of golden color to it, remove it from the pan and set aside on a plate.  Sauté the onion, garlic, zucchini, and red bell pepper until the onion and garlic are golden.  Add the tomatoes, salt and pepper.  When the tomato skins start separating from the flesh, add the eggplant to the pan again.  Adjust the seasoning if required.  Juice the lemon over everything, then turn off the heat – it’s ready!

Serve the veggies with some rice or what ever else is on the menu, today it was baked samosas.  This is a great way to get some veggies, including eggplant, to the family dinner table.

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I made Anne Burrell’s hash with some chicken leg quarters last night… amazing! I love sweet potatoes and normally roast them whole and unadulterated, but this recipe intrigued me. It will largely depend on the bacon you use as to what the resulting smoke level will be, so use what you like best. I crisped up the bacon and removed the grease from the pan, substitute with just a bit of olive oil so that nothing sticks and the salt and pepper have something to grab on to. No seeds were added since I would be sharing with the little one. I used one green apple and two medium sweet potatoes, three slices of bacon. 

Not only is this perfect for dinner, it would be a great addition to a holiday brunch table.  Be forewarned though, it will be a little mushy the next day if you try to save any leftovers (all the more reason to eat and share more!)  The bacon drippings might be able to stay next time, or I will try a more smoke packed bacon to impart more flavor to the cubes of potato and apple.  A sweet yellow onion would be fine too, when green onions are not available.  I cooked my green onion too long and they just disappeared on me. 

This is a good recipe if you want something new for your sweet spuds.  Go check it out on FN‘s website!

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