Sunday, September 18, 2005


Minted Eggplant

What? A recipe using MINT? Could it be? What a wacky idea!

Ok, Ok, I know, almost every post (with a recipe that is) this month has had mint in it. (At least, the ones that didnt have figs in it) Its just that when autumn really hits and its gone I will be missing it like crazy, so I am intent on getting my fill now. Cant blame a girl for that, can you? I didnt think so. Grin.

This is so versatile it is also the basis for a dish I call ugly-pasta. I just puree the whole thing and pour it over whole-wheat noodles. If you dont puree it, it is a great side dish with lamb or any type of kebob. Its delicious, but a tad bland looking. (Ok, its just downright gloopy and grey, which is fine because it tastes vibrant and strong and smooth and delcious as can be.) This is one of those cases where you have to get beyond looks and taste a real sensation. Try it, and enjoy!

1 large eggplant (I used a Graffiti eggplant, only because it was so sassy looking. It didn’t taste any different than any other eggplant I typically encounter)
1 bunch mint, leaves rough chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 chile pepper, seeded and minced
olive oil
salt and pepper
fresh peas (in the pod is nice, but shelled is good too)

Dice the eggplant and steam for 20 minutes or until cooked. Raw eggplant isn’t good, so make sure it has turned totally grey.

When the eggplant is cooked remove from the heat and set aside.

In a medium sauté pan, cook the garlic and chile in the olive oil until fragrant (about 1 minute). Add the peas and toss to coat. Add the diced eggplant and toss again. Remove from heat and let cool.

When cool, add the mint and season with salt and pepper. Add more olive oil to taste.

Serve room temperature or chilled. Alternatively, you can puree the whole thing and serve over warm pasta.


The head of a panel considering whether to reopen the Japanese market to U.S. beef said on Monday he would prepare a draft report on U.S. beef safety by the panel's next meeting, a comment that suggests a decision is near.

The panel, a subcommittee of Japan's Food Safety Commission, met on Monday for the sixth time since May when the Japanese government asked it to rule on the safety of U.S. beef and beef offal, which have been banned in Japan since December 2003 when a case of mad cow disease was discovered in the United States.

Without approval from the commission, an independent group of experts who assess food safety, the government cannot implement an agreement made last October with the United States to resume imports of U.S. beef and beef products.

Before the ban, Japan was the top importer of American beef, with imports valued at $1.4 billion in 2003. - Reuters

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Such a beautiful looking eggplant! Thanks for the easy-sounding recipe, too. I'm always looking for a new use for one of my favorite vegetables.
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