Kitchen Garden Seeds

Eggplants Baked with Gingered Red Pepper Purée
Elizabeth Schneider * The Essential Reference: Vegetables From Amaranth to Zucchini
The Essential Reference: Vegetables From Amaranth to Zucchini
Published by HarperCollins Publishers

Narrow, lightweight lavender Oriental-type eggplant is the most dependably sweet and tender type for this and other recipes, Eastern or Western.
Eggplants Baked with Gingered Red Pepper Purée
  • White part of 1 medium Scallion (green onion)
  • 1" ginger chunk, peeled
  • 1 or 2 small, fresh red or green Chile Peppers
  • 1 large Red Bell Pepper, roasted and peeled
  • 1/2 tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 4 narrow Oriental Eggplants (about 6 ounces each)
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • Preheat oven to 375°F. Slice Scallion and ginger. Seed and slice Chile Pepper(s). Combine Scallion, ginger, Chile Pepper(s and Bell Pepper in food processor with honey, salt, vinegar and oil. Purée until smooth.

    Carefully and evenly halve Eggplants lengthwise. Deeply score a diagonal crosshatch pattern (at 1/2" intervals) to cut through flesh nearly to skin. Press the sides of the Eggplant to open the cuts. Spoon sauce into them, then spread remainder on top. Set halves in a baking pan or dish just large enough to hold them in a single layer. Pour in a shallow slick of water, just to cover bottom of pan. Cover pan with foil. Bake until Eggplants are very tender, a half hour or more.

    At the same time, spread sesame seeds in a small pan. Set in oven and bake until tan, about 5 minutes. Set aside.

    Arrange Eggplants on a platter, sprinkle with sesame seeds and serve hot. Serves 4.