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Tuesday, March 6, 2012

BERENJENAS PEQUEÑAS WITH 15TH C EGGPLANT ESCABECHE RECIPE

Eggplant Applegreen
Photo by: skrubtudse
half grown green eggplants. Generally, these were pickled. Nola’s recipe for “Pickled Eggplants,” is similar to today’s basic recipes for pickling with the exception of using honey. Although the technique was thought to be of Arab origin, it actually dates back to Roman times, as seen in Apicius’ recipe: "To Preserve Fried Fish,” in which fish is covered with vinegar as soon as it is fried. [ES: Carroll-Mann. Guisados 2-art. Jun 6, 01:102:ftn 96; Flower. 1958:I:IX:1:51; Nola 1989:xli-2; and Nola/Pérez. 1994:190]

FOR PICKLED EGGPLANTS ADAPTED FROM NOLA'S,  
#xli-2 PARA BERENJENAS EN ESCABECHE*
To make about 6 pints

Ingredients

Berenjenas en escabeche

Photo by: Fernando Blanco

6 lbs small eggplants
1 tbsp cumin
grape leaves
1 tsbp ground cloves
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
1 tbsp ground ginger
2 ½ tsp salt
1 qt honey
1 qt distilled white vinegar

Preparation



Rinse and peel the eggplants. Quarter them and then cut them into ¼” lengthwise slices, then cut slices into lengthwise ¼” strips.  Put them in an earthenware dish, not iron, cover with 1 ½ tbsp salt and water. Let them soak for 3 days. Throw out water and cover them with salt water and leave them for 3 more days. Repeat this process a total of four times. On the 12th day cover them with fresh salt water and cumin and cover that with grape leaves. Bring to a boil and cook until the eggplant is done, about 10 minutes. Strain the water off the eggplants and squeeze out any excess water. Mix the spices together with salt and mix this with the eggplants in a pot. Place the eggplants in 6 pint size jars. Heat the honey and vinegar until it boils. Then set aside and let cool. Pour this mixture over the eggplants. Steal the jars shut and store. This mixture can keep for one year.  Serve at room temperature with another vegetable as an entrée.


*See blog titled canasta published July 12, 2012 for a variation of the same recipe.

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