Melanzana aka aubergine

aubergine, eggplant, melanzana, different names for a tasty veg

1. cutting the melanzana

sliced melanza (aubergine)Aubergines or melanzana can be cut in two useful ways: lengthwise and transversal. Much depends on what dish you will be preparing. When cutting lengthwise you should remove a strip of skin from to bottom, in a U shape. That way all slices will have the same amount of skin.

2. Salting

Sprinkled with salt, the melanzana loses water and the bitter tasteOnce sliced sprinkle some salt on top. Leave it for about an hour. The bitterness comes to the surface. Do not forget to dab them dry after. It is true that the aubergines lose some of their peculiar taste.

Sampolo 246 - Cultori del Gusto

3. Frying

frying diced aubergine in plenty oilMake sure your oil is at the right temperature (around 180 degrees) so they soak up less oil. Leave them on to drain on kitchen paper. Frying aubergines is an important step for countless recipes and should be carried out with great care. The skin –when you are not using it for your preparation – can be fried apart. It turns out crisp like and is excellent for starters. Melanzana chips.

4. Grilling

grilled melanzana, great on the bbqAfter having your slices treated with salt, marinate them in oil, garlic and herbs (mint, oregano). Use slightly thicker slices for the bbq.  More than a concession for vegetarians, they are truly tasty. When using a grill, you might want to use thinner slices. And if you are going to add them in a grilled salad, together with zucchini and other veggies, there is no need in seasoning before grilling.

5. Dried melanzana

In period of abundance – summer in the south – you can sun dry some slices. There is no need to salt them. Once the aubergines lose their liquid and start resembling cardboard, you can store them in a dry and dark place. When using them later, they will soak up whatever liquid they find on their way. A truly pleasant surprise in winter stews.

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