Eggplants are a type of fruit that grows in the shape of a long, thin cylinder. They are usually green in color and have smooth, shiny skin. Eggplants are often used in cooking because of their mild flavor.
They are also known as aubergines, brinjals, bhindi, brinjal, capsicum, chayote, chenopod, cucumber, gourd, karela, lady’s finger, melon, okra, pumpkin, snake gourd, summer squash, and vegetable marrow.
The eggplant is native to India but has been cultivated for thousands of years throughout Asia. It was introduced into Europe during Roman times and later spread across Africa and North America. The first written record of its cultivation dates back to 400 B.C. when it was mentioned by Aristotle. In ancient Greece, the Romans, and Egypt, were called "melons" or "aubergine."
Eggplants are delicious, nutritious, and versatile. They can be used in salads, soups, stir-fries, pasta dishes, and even desserts.
But sometimes, eggplants can be hard to find at the grocery store. And if you’re short on time, you might not want to spend hours cooking an entire eggplant.
That’s where eggplant substitutes come in handy. These healthy alternatives are quick and easy to prepare. Plus, they taste just as good as their real counterparts.
Here are four delicious eggplant substitute recipes that you can try next time you’re short of time.
Eggplants are delicious and versatile. They can be used in salads, soups, stir-fries, pasta dishes, pizza toppings, etc. However, there are times when you want to use an alternative to eggplant. Here are some of the best alternatives to eggplant.
You may think zucchinis look like small yellow croissant bread rolls. But these vegetables actually belong to the same family as eggplants. Zucchinis are available year-round and are great additions to your diet. You can eat them raw or cooked.
If you don’t know how to cook zucchinis yet, here are two simple ways: Boil or steam them until tender then cut off the ends and slice them lengthwise. Or microwave them for about 5 minutes per side.
You can add zucchinis to salad dressings, sandwiches, pizzas, pasta, dips, stews, curries, and more! Additionally, they’re perfect for stuffing with meatloaf mix.
This one sounds weird, right? Well, tomatoes aren’t really related to eggplants. Instead, they belong to another plant species altogether. That said, this tomato substitute works well in many different types of food.
Roasting tomatoes gives them a sweet and savory flavor. This makes them ideal for adding to sauces, pasta, burgers, tacos, wraps, and other foods. If you prefer eating fresh tomatoes over canned ones, roast them instead. Simply place whole cherry tomatoes onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes. Then let cool before using.
These fungi have long stems and resemble oysters. Oyster mushrooms grow underground and contain lots of water inside. So, they need to stay moist while growing. As such, they require constant moisture.
However, once harvested, they dry out quickly. Therefore, you should only buy dried oyster mushrooms. Once soaked in hot water, they become soft enough to consume.
Additionally, oyster mushrooms are high in protein and fiber. They help lower cholesterol levels and reduce blood pressure. They can also be used as an alternative for eggplant because they share similar flavors. Furthermore, they work well in Asian cuisine. For example, you could make fried rice by combining ground beef, soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic powder, onion flakes, salt, pepper, and oyster mushroom slices.
These veggies are often overlooked but deserve attention. Bell peppers are packed full of nutrients including vitamin C, potassium, folate, magnesium, iron, and beta carotene. In addition, they provide antioxidants that protect against cancer.
Furthermore, roasting brings out the natural sweetness of the vegetable. It’s important to note that not all varieties of bell peppers are created equal. Some are sweeter than others. The most common type is green bell peppers. They can be a good substitute for eggplant if you want something milder tasting. However, red and orange bell peppers tend to taste stronger.
Eggplants are a type of pantyhose that are designed to hold eggs. Egg pants are usually made from nylon and cotton. They are available in different sizes and colors. They are used to prevent the yolk from breaking during cooking.
As mentioned earlier, there are several eggplant substitutes on the market today. You may find some of these products online or in your local grocery store. But, it’s always best to try new things when making substitutions. After all, no matter what kind of eggplant substitute you use, you’ll still end up enjoying delicious dishes.
You can give a chance to other eggplant varieties like Japanese, Chinese, Italian, etc. There are so many options! Just pick whatever suits your fancy.
The bitterness comes from sulfur compounds called glucosinolates. Glucosinolates are found in cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, kale, collard greens, mustard greens, turnip greens, radishes, arugula, bok choy, rutabaga, kohlrabi, horseradish, cilantro, parsley, celery root, leeks, onions, and more.
When you add roasted eggplant to any dish, you’re actually adding its bitter juices. This means that you will get less flavor from the rest of the ingredients. If you don’t mind this fact, then go ahead and enjoy your meal with roasted eggplant. Otherwise, just skip them altogether.
If you’ve ever salted raw eggplant before baking it, you know how much better it tastes after being baked. Salting removes excess moisture which makes the flesh firmer and easier to slice.
When you bake eggplant without salting it first, however, it tends to absorb too much water. As a result, it becomes mushy and bland. So, instead of using salty seasoning, why not sprinkle some lemon zest? Lemon has been shown to have anti-bacterial properties. Therefore, it helps eliminate bad bacteria while enhancing the overall flavor of food.
It seems as though everyone knows about the benefits of eating fresh fruits and vegetables. Unfortunately, people rarely think about buying produce that isn’t at peak ripeness. When an eggplant looks wilted, it doesn’t mean that it’s rotten. Instead, it could simply be past its prime.
In order to make sure that you buy ripe fruit and vegetables, look for signs such as bright color, firm texture, and sweet smell. Also, avoid purchasing anything that feels soft or squishy.
There are two ways to prepare eggplant: steaming and roasting. Steaming involves boiling the vegetable until tender but not mushy. Roasting requires heating the vegetable over high heat until browned. Both methods work well if you want to remove the skin.
However, they won’t do much good if you plan to eat the pulp inside. In addition, both techniques require long periods of time. For example, you need to steam an entire medium-sized eggplant for 30 minutes. On top of that, you also need to wait another 15 minutes before cutting into it. The same goes for roasting. It takes around 20 minutes to fully cook one large eggplant. And, once again, you must let it cool down completely before slicing.
So, unless you really love cooking, I suggest skipping the whole process. Instead, choose something else to snack on.
I hope these tips helped you learn how to use eggplants effectively. You can now start enjoying their unique flavors! and I have also mentioned some of the substitutes that you can try. I hope this article helped you out with all your food curiosities.