For the past year, Amanda Hesser, Merrill Stubbs and their team at Food52.com have been running weekly recipe contests, whittling down dozens of reader-submitted recipes on a given theme to a final two each week, with their readers voting for their favorite. The winning recipes each week will appear in forthcoming Food52 cookbooks. (See it all explained here).
Since Food52's readers submit so many fabulous recipes that can't all make the final cut each week, their editors pulled some of their fall vegetable favorites together for us, and all this month we'll be featuring them on HuffPostFood. Last week we showed you three great ideas for red peppers. This week: eggplant.
Coming up later in the month: a plethora of more great Food52 recipes for mushrooms, sweet potatoes and butternut squash.
Amanda & Merrill's Notes from Food52.com: Japanese eggplant has firmer flesh than regular eggplant, which means it holds up when stewed. We're not sure if that's why luvcookbooks calls for this type, but it works really well here as you simmer slices of the eggplant with canned tomatoes, onion and a mix of spices, including cumin, mustard seeds, coriander and garam masala. Luvcookbooks has you toast the spices and brown the onion, which gives it a richness and sweetness that permeates the dish. Then you add the eggplant and tomatoes and cook them until the eggplant is tender. (You'll need to add water a few times to keep the pan from drying out.) In less than 20 minutes, you'll have a wonderful, fragrant dish that would be great with grilled lamb or roasted chicken. - A&M Get the recipe here. Photo: Sarah Shatz
KelseyTheNaptimeChef's notes from Food52.com: For me, lasagna is the epitome of cold weather comfort food. A few years ago I came across a recipe for lasagna with prosciutto and roasted portobello mushrooms. Since I had eggplant on hand at the time I substituted it for the mushrooms to see if the flavor pairing would work. The result was so delicious that I have never looked back. Get the recipe here. Photo: Flickr: amy_b
Vvvanessa's notes at Food52.com: I like that this is a relatively fast dish to make (after the eggplant drains). It's a great topping for bruschetta (on a spread of fresh ricotta!), and i enjoyed it mixed into pasta (again with the ricotta!). In both cases, the addition of some pinenuts (for texture) and golden raisins (a little more sweet to the sour) were nice, along with a little shower of parmesan -- though it's perfectly fine without the additions. I didn't try it on top of steak as the recipe notes suggest, but it sounds like a great idea! It's the kind of dish I like to make a big batch of to have on hand for putting together a quick meal. It's easy, tasty, and versatile. - vvvanessa Get the recipe here. Photo: Sweetbites
Thirschfeld's notes at Food52.com: I have recently really enjoyed cooking with whole grains, rye berries, spelt and millet. They are really delicious and different to work with. I have been trying to find ways to incorporate them into dishes and not just for breakfast. Get the recipe here. Photo: thirschfeld