No matter how you say it, eggplant is good. I’ve had it many different ways and I have never had an eggplant that I did not like. From crab and shrimp stuffed eggplant at Galatoire’s Restaurant in New Orleans to a spread served on pita at a party in someone’s home, it’s all good.
There are recipes for eggplant in almost every country in the world and one of the most popular dishes among some of our foreign cultures.
One recipe that you just cannot beat is for Hot & Spicy Eggplant. This recipe also gives you the opportunity to use a few other fresh ingredients from your garden such as tomatoes, peppers and basil. It is a dish that can be made ahead and chilled to be served later at your party, or to your family. Bring out the French bread toasted with a little garlic oil or butter and spread the joy.
Hot & Spicy Eggplant
1 (one-pound) eggplant
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 medium size green pepper, cored and finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups diced plum tomatoes
¼ cup red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
4 teaspoons capers, drained
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/8 teaspoon hot red pepper sauce, or to taste
Preheat oven to 350º F. Halve the eggplant lengthwise and place it cut side down on a lightly oiled baking sheet. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until it pierces easily with a fork. Cool.
Meanwhile, heat the oil in a heavy 12-inch skillet over moderate heat. Add the onion, green pepper, and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally until soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, vinegar, basil, capers, salt, cayenne, and hot red pepper sauce.
Scoop the eggplant flesh into a food processor or blender and process for 10-15 seconds, or until nearly pureed. Stir the eggplant into the skillet mixture. Simmer uncovered for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cool, cover and refrigerate for several hours or until well chilled.
*Hot & Spicy Eggplant will keep refrigerated for up to 3 days. Makes 4 cups. Make French bread garlic toast by mixing fresh minced garlic with olive oil, and spreading it on the bread. Bake or toast bread until golden brown and serve with Hot & Spicy Eggplant.
By Kate Karam, Monrovia,
Photographs courtesy of Monrovia
It’s not only coastal gardens that have to deal with persistent winds – inland gardens at higher altitudes and those in flat, wind-prone areas get regularly battered, too. Since there’s nothing good about plants stripped of their foliage or rendered dry and desiccated by a gale force tempest, the solution might be as simple as using specimens that are just fine with it. Here are a few we recommend. But first, some advice.
Join fellow garden lovers, history buffs and music enthusiasts to discover the quaint towns and colorful gardens of Holland and Belgium in May of 2018.
This exciting journey will be hosted by nationally known host Eric Johnson, of Public Television's blockbuster show GardenSmart. Your river cruise begins in Amsterdam where you'll see works by Rembrandt and Van Gogh, Anne Frank's House, and see the city's most famous gardens. Then spend a full morning on the grounds of the most beautiful spring garden in the world-Keukenhof! Visit the picturesque Belgian towns of Bruges and Ghent as well as Kinderdijk, with the Netherlands' iconic collection of 19 authentic windmills that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In addition, history buffs will experience a captivating tour of the WWI trenches of Flanders and WWII Arnhem Battlefield of A Bridge Too Far fame. You won't want to miss this extraordinary garden adventure to Holland and Belgium.
Book by November 15, 2017 and save up to $1200 dollars per person!
To register call:
Alki Tours at 800-895-2554
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