Friday, July 22, 2011

Eggplant Goodness

I have always heard that eating purple vegetables is nutritious.  I did a little reading about eggplants and found out that the skin is good because it supplies dietary fiber.  To a chef an eggplant is a vegetable but to a botanist it is a fruit.  I also learned that the Eggplant which belongs to the Nightshade family andcontains toxins in its early stage of growth.  So never attempt to cook and eat a very small eggplant as it can cause illness.  On the other hand a fully developed eggplant contains the phytochemical monterpene which is helpful in preventing the growth of cancer cells.

Some other benefits of Eggplants:

Low in calories and sodium
3-1/2 ounces(100 grams) supplies plenty of minerals:
21.4 mg of calcium
13.0 mg of magnesium
248 mg of potassium
22 mg of phosphorus

Eggplant Rounds
J Baked Eggplant Rounds
 Cut the eggplant in slices about 1/2 inch in thickness. The eggplant is like a sponge. To draw out some of the water for quicker cooking, spread salt on both sides of the eggplant slices and place on a paper towel or on a colander.  Cover with another piece of paper towel.  Wait about 30 minutes, rinse the salt and.....
blot the liquid using the piece of paper towel.  You might use more than one piece.
 Baked Eggplant Rounds
Place the eggplants on a cookie sheet or use your Pampered Chef bar pan if you have one.  Slightly oil the surface using olive oil.  Spread pesto on the eggplant round, and add tomatoes, slices of Mozzarella cheese and sprinkle Parmesan cheese.
Baked Eggplant Rounds
 Bake in a preheated 375 oven for about 25 minutes.
Baked Eggplant Rounds

I used the Cilantro pesto I made a few weeks ago, but store bought pesto or home made basil pesto will be good too.

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