Vegetarian cooking ( Discussion of matters related to the procurement, preparation, cooking, nutritional value and eating of vegetarian foods.

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Default nightshades are the right shades

Hi all,

I bought some baby eggplants the other day. When I decided to cook
one for lunch, I just got out a handful of things I thought would be
good with it. I ended up making this:

3-4 Tbsp olive oil
1 thin eggplant (Japanese/Italian, e.g), sliced lengthwise into 1/4" slices

1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground red chili (to taste)
1/4 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp minced garlic
large pinch nutmeg
pinch cumin
pinch spearmint

1/2 oz walnuts, very coarsely crushed (avg 1/4" pieces, say)

4 oz water
6-7 oz diced tomatoes (I used Muir Glen Organic, canned)
2 oz minced onions

1/2 cup basmati/sushi rice, well rinsed
12 oz water

In a very wide pan, heat the oil at medium-high heat.
Arrange the eggplant slices on the pan quickly, adding oil if needed.
(Remember the order of slices, and don't stir at all!)
Mix the herbs/spices, and liberally sprinkle them on top of the
eggplant slices.
Once the eggplants have started to change color/consistency, add the
Fry briefly, then add a half cup of water.
Once it has reduced somewhat, add the tomatoes and onions, cover, and
reduce the heat.
Simmer gently (still covered) till the liquid has reduced a lot.
Meanwhile, cook the rice until it's sticky.

I ended up plating it in a kind of silly/fun way. I'd've taken a
picture, but I was hungry...:

On one side of the plate, I pressed the rice into a 4" diameter disc.
I reassembled the eggplant slices (hence remembering the order), and
placed that on one side of the disc, coming down to the middle of
the side of the plate opposite the rice.
On the other side of the disc, I arranged the tomatoes and walnuts in
a similar shape, coming together with the eggplant at its terminus.
Then I poured the remaining liquid around the eggplant/tomatoes, to
fill in any gaps.

One of the fun things was chopping off bits of the rice, putting some
eggplant on it, and having pseudo-nigiri. Or perhaps I'm easily
amused. A good incidental outcome of this was learning that walnuts
are delicious with tomatoes, too.

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Default nightshades are the right shades

Natarajan Krishnaswami > wrote:
> A good incidental outcome of this was learning that walnuts are
> delicious with tomatoes, too.

Ooh. That opens up many sauce possibilities. What a handy discovery.

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