Wednesday, 30 July 2008

Spanish sweet eggplants

Polish: bakłażan
Tajik: Боқлаҷон
Suahili: mbilingani
Romany: patlazhùy
Albanian: patëllxhani
Sranan: bulansyey
Catalan: albergínia
Tagalog: talóng
Finnish: munakoiso
Papiamento: berehein

I was wondering more than once which plant is a vegetable and which is a fruit. Recently an Egyptian told me that in Egypt strawberries are considered vegetables... or rather, students are taught that strawberries belong to the vegetable family. But since I know that it is possible to make a sweet cake from spinach, parsnip, zucchini or beet and add quinces, pears or apricots to meat savoury dishes, nothing is impossible. Going back to the divagations about aubergines and traditional dishes made of this, like Indians say, "king of vegetable", but prepared on a sweet way, I suggest Spanish (Menorcan) berenjenas dulces, sweet eggplants. Actually, I know two sweet eggplant Spanish dishes. Both have a long tradition and are more than probably ancient, medieval, Arab influence. Berenjenas dulces are more sopisticated than berenjenas a la miel, eggplants fried in a batter and dipped in honey. The second recipe will be posted here soon, too.

2 eggplants (rather big)
1 potato
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon breadcrumbs
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon powder
1 egg
1 teaspoon butter
+ some more butter and breadcrumbs

1. Cook unpeeled potato in water with a bit of salt. When soft andstill warm, peel and mash it and set aside.

2. Cut eggplants lengthwise in 2 halves and cook 15 minutes in boiling water. Drain well and set aside to cool. Using a teaspoon, take the pulp away, but leaving 1/2 cm-thick marge of eggplant pulp. Now you have "boats" from the skin and 1/2 cm pulp.

(left: aubergine pulp, middle: aubergine boat, right: aubergine half)

3. Mash eggplant "meat" together with potato and fry 5 minutes in butter. Set aside to cool. After that, add sugar, cinnamon, whisked egg and breadcrumbs. Taste and check the consistency, if needed add some more sugar or breadcrumbs.

4. Fill the "boats" with sweet aubergine-potato filling, cover with butter scraps and sprinkle with breadcrumbs. Bake in the oven (180 C) for about 20-30 minutes (you have to check if the surface is already golden-brown and crunchy)

(filled boats)

(filled boats with butter and breadcrmbs, just before being baked)

No comments: