Aug
02
    
Posted (Lori) in News

PRESERVING EGGPLANT

The eggplant keeps coming. I never have trouble using it up, but I try to put aside a few of them for the winter. Raw eggplant doesn’t freeze well, but I have three other methods:

1. Pulp it. I prick it all over (because it explodes in the oven if you don’t–if it happens to you once, you become a careful pricker); wrap it loosely in foil, and put it in a 350  to 400 degree oven. In about an hour (sometimes it take more, even two hours) the eggplants caves in and is soft all over. Scrape the pulp from the peel, pack into ziplock bags, and freeze. It makes great babaganoush all winter (mix with tahini paste, lemon, garlic, salt, and pepper).

2. Roasted cubes: Cut into cubes, toss with olive oil, and roast on a cookie sheet for about 30 minutes. Cool, wrap, and freeze. The eggplant can be used in recipes after they’re thawed

3. Pickle it: Here’s a link to instructions. Pickled eggplants can’t be stored at room temperature and will last only a couple of months in the fridge–still, this will keep your eggplants until the beginning of October.

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/jamie-oliver/amazing-pickled-and-marinated-vegetables-recipe.html

Some people preserve eggplant by making and freezing eggplant parmesan, which I think is too much trouble and takes up too much room in the freezer.

PRESRVING BASIL

I store my basil in a vase, filled with water, on the kitchen counter; it makes the kitchen smell great and usually lasts for eels. Every few days, I cut off any deteriorated leaved and change the water; sometimes, the whole thing turns black–and I don’t know why it only works sometimes. DO NOT PUT YOUR BASIL IN THE REFRIGERATOR FOR MORE THAN A FEW DAYS.

You can also dry basil by tying up the bunch and hanging it upside down for a few days until it’s dry. Then crumble and store in tightly-closed jars. Not the same as fresh, but okay for sauces.

Pesto can be frozen and is quite acceptable when thawed. Here’s the basic recipe from NYT. Florence Fabricant uses pine nuts or walnuts; I’ve also used almonds. Pine nuts are the best, but are just too expensiveL

http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/2653-basic-pesto



Post a comment
Name: 
Email: 
URL: 
Comments: