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Monday, July 20, 2015

Stuffed Baby White Eggplant: Do not try this at home, kids!

The cutest little white eggplants beckoned to me at the Farmer's Market the weekend before last. They actually looked like eggs in both size and color. Too cute to leave behind, I selected a dozen and took them home. 

They sat on my countertop for nearly a week. I would admire their cuteness while contemplating the best method of preparing them. I finally decided they would be best served with an interesting stuffing. 

Unfortunately, the lovely baby white eggplants did not take me to the land of unicorns, rainbows and glitter where everything is wonderful. It was a complete bust. Bummer! 

Eggplant is hands down my all time favorite vegetable. No contest. Eggplant is so versatile. They are delicious grilled, baked, sautéed, or fried. We are not huge meat eaters at our house so eggplant is one of our 'go to' vegetables because it has a great texture similar to muscle (meat) as well as a great flavor.

I set off on my baby white eggplant preparation adventure by baking them for 20 minutes. It was quite a surprise to find the white peel had turned brown. "Hmmm..." is all I could say to myself. I was disappointed that they did not retain their color and continued down the path to preparing them into something interesting. 

The next step was to hollow the eggplants, leaving approximately 1/4 inch flesh inside the skin. The hollowed out portion was diced and combined with cooked black rice, diced tomato and cheese. The mixture was packed into the eggplant 'shell' and baked an additional 10 minutes, just until warmed.  

To say the end product was 'meh' would be complimentary. The problem? They were bitter and astringent to the point that they were inedible. I have not had such a negative experience with eggplant. Ever. It was very disappointing. 

I discussed what I will now refer to as 'the unfortunate baby white eggplant defeat' with my husband. (I could tell that he was thinking that I shouldn't have purchased a new veggie without doing some homework first.)  I mentioned that I was still going to post it on my blog. He seemed a little surprised that I would air my less than stellar escapades in the kitchen. 

There are a few reasons why I don't mind admitting defeat by cute white eggplants:

  1. I am no Martha Stewart. My efforts don't always end up perfect and I'm fine with that.
  2. My teenage daughter says that I will gain more respect from my audience if I am honest with my reviews. (That is an interesting perspective from someone who is only 13.) I have never had a problem with brutal honesty, which I have to say isn't always a good characteristic. I know there are some carnivores will read this post and will be saying "See? If you had grilled a steak for dinner you wouldn't have been defeated by baby white eggplant." (You know who you are.) They would be correct. 
  3. Nothing ventured nothing gained. I know a lot of people that eat the same thing over and over and over. How boring. I like to branch out and try new things. It's fun and usually results in something at least edible and acceptable, even if it doesn't make it to my 'Make This Again!' list. Sometimes ends in a complete bust as it did with the baby white eggplant.

Not all of my kitchen experiments end up working in a positive manner, but they do work. What worked here? I learned that baby white eggplants are not appropriate for stuffing. And I learned that maybe my husband is right. I should do a little homework prior to trying something new. (Please do not tell him I said that.) I will do a little investigating on how to prepare small white eggplant. Maybe I just purchased a bad batch. Maybe not. 

That being said, if there is anyone out there who has had a positive experience - or even a negative experience - with baby white eggplant I would certainly like to hear about it. I would love to give these cute little veggies a second chance!


Gloria Baker said...

Ah dear what sad when something is not we hope!!
I never use baby white eggplants but I saw them last year!
Did you see in google?

Gloria Baker said...

Ah dear what sad when something is not we hope!!
I never use baby white eggplants but I saw them last year!
Did you see in google?

Lavender and Lime ( said...

I often buy new ingredients and try them out without research. And blogging about this will help others learn so that's a good thing! Hope you find out how to use them. I would think a curry might be a good use?

Cocoa and Lavender said...

I have only grilled or sautéed little white eggplants, and they work fine. I don't think I have ever salted them, either. It is refreshing to know that things don't work - it is a good lesson for all. I have had many failures and have considered posts on "culinary disasters" and "failed photography." I guess we are all lucky (and good) enough that the failures aren't many... Like you, I never ever let the other half know he was correct... :) ~ David

Andrea_TheKitchenLioness said...

Grilling the small white aubergine is one option but I know that they are used in Thai cuisine a lot - there are quite a few wonderful recipes out there. These lovely white aubergines are so elegant to look at and I can never resit them either when I see them - it is always worth experimenting a bit!
Very entertaining post to read on this late, warm summer day!

Pam said...

Bummer! It happens to all of us. I think grilling them would be tasty.

Oriana from Mommyhood's Diary said...

Gah!! I haven't cooked baby eggplants yet but I know about soul-crushing fails in cooking hahaha. Keep trying you'll get it right.

Kennedy Cole| KCole's Creative Corner said...

I apologize for the recipe fail, but DON'T WORRY! ;) IT HAPPENS TO THE BEST OF US :) HAVE A GREAT DAY! :D

Anonymous said...

See? If you had grilled a steak for dinner you wouldn't have been defeated by baby white eggplant.

SavoringTime in the Kitchen said...

Last year I tried growing a variety of eggplant that we small, long and narrow - a fingerling eggplant of sorts. They also, were bitter. I guess the old-fashioned eggplants are truly the best tasting. Thanks for sharing your experience with these. I think I'll leave them at the farmers market if I see them :)