Although the eggplant is associated with Mediterranean cooking, its original home is tropical Asia. Primitive forms in this part of the world were very small and were invariably eaten pickled. The Europeans name for eggplant – aubergine – is derived rather circuitously from the Sanskrit vantin-ganah which means “antiwind vegetable”.
Until the potato reached Europe from the New World, the eggplant was the principle starchy vegetable prepared in numerous ways, including fried like potatoes.
Eggplant contain carotenoids, B complex, particularly folic acid, vitamin C, potassium, phosphorus and calcium. It contains some protein and is a good source of fiber. Eggplant contains compounds called scopoletin and scoparone that block convulsions. African folk medicine values the eggplant to relieve nervous excitement and to counteract epilepsy. It is also taken as a natural contraceptive. In Korea, dried eggplant is used to treat a variety of illnesses, including measles, alcoholism and stomach cancer. SWF
Artichoke Hearts & Eggplant Galettes w/ Rosemary, Garlic, Chili & Goat Cheese
- 1 medium/large eggplant
- 1 Tbsp sea salt
- 3 eggs
- 10 Tbsp brown rice flour (or regular)
- 1 can plain artichoke hearts, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp chili flakes
- 3 tsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh goat cheese (or cheese of your choice)
- sea salt & pepperPeel and thinly slice the eggplant. Place in a drainer or bowl and toss with sea salt. Let it sit for one hour for the bitter juices to be drawn out. Rinse under running water to remove the salt and squeeze tightly with your hands to remove excess water. Place in a mixing bowl.
In a medium bowl, beat eggs with flour to make a thick paste. If paste is thin, add extra flour. Mix well till the mixture is smooth. Stir in eggplant & artichoke hearts and mix till they are well coated.
Add rosemary, chili flakes, garlic and season to taste with sea salt and pepper (be careful not to add too much salt) . Add goat cheese and mix carefully so not to cream it… you want them to be chunky.
Heat a large oiled pan. When hot, pour about 2 spoonfuls of mixture into the pan and they should form into galletes or “cakes”. Cook until both sides are golden brown.Serve as a side with anything italian or with a salad for lunch.