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Friday, November 13, 2009

Oven-Fried Eggplant

It's Friday, the 13th. Ooooo...Cue scary Halloween/Twilight Zone theme music. Have your lucky charms with you at all times. I'm not very superstitious. I've walked on several cracks and my mom is still walking upright. I do have certain rituals I do to keep myself in the "good luck vibe." I've thrown the occasional salt over the shoulder and a "knock on wood" every now and then. Are you superstitious? You don't have to tell me, if you don't want to.

Just like the my baked zucchini sticks, its relative cousin is the oven-fried eggplant. It's alter ego is the deep-fried kind. We're veering away from the alter ego for a moment to concentrate on the cousin.

Here's a neat little trick I learned from a friend to help it stay crispy. I cut the eggplant into 1/3-inch pieces toss them in a little salt and lay them flat on a baking pan for 1 hour. 1/2 hour would suffice. This takes out the moisture from the vegetable, so you'll get water droplettes on them. Pat the pieces dry with a paper towel them dredge them in the usual breading method of flour, egg wash, and my favorite, panko crumbs.

Baked them for 20-25 minutes and what I was left with was a nice crispy, yet still slightly tender inside. A healthy version of the fried stuff

Serves 2

Oven-Fried Eggplant

2-3 long Japanese eggplants (cut into coins)
1/4 c flour
1 egg - beaten
1/3 c milk
2-3 c panko
salt and pepper
horseradish mustard dip (recipe below)

Cut the egg plants into 1/3-1/2 inch chips. Place on a baking pan and sprinkle both sides with salt. Let it sit for at least 1/2-hour to let the moisture out of the eggplant. Then pat it dry with a paper towel.

Preheat your oven 400˚F

Cut the egg plants into 1/3-1/2 inch chips.

Create three breading stations
1 - flour seasoned with some salt and pepper
2 - Egg with milk - seasoned with pinch of salt
3 - panko crumbs

Bread each piece of eggplant 1, 2, and 3 in that order and place on an ungreased baking sheet.

Bake for 25 minutes. Give the pieces a flip half way through for an even browning.

Horseradish mustard Dip

2 Tbsp sour cream
1 1/2 Tbsp horseradish mustard
1 tsp lime juice

Combine all ingredients together.


pigpigscorner said...

haha I enver noticed it's 13th today! I never thought of cooking eggplants this way, makes a great snack!

Donna-FFW said...

That horseradish mustard dip sounds perfectly delicious. Bet it would be fantastic with any fried veggie!! The eggplant sounds perfect!

Debbie said...

Eggplant is one of my favorites! I've only ever had it fried though. This sounds interesting. The dip sounds great....

Anonymous said...

Crispy & delicious! Perfect with the horseradish mustard dip!

Anonymous said...

This looks fab. I love that u baked them. I always worry about all the oil that the eggplants seem to drink up. And the horseradish dip??? I love horesradish!!!! I am so there, eating up all your yummy food LOL.

Chibog in Chief said...

this looks healthy and delicious!!

tavolini said...

Good idea! Have you tried them in eggplant parmesan? I love the oven fried method :D

Fresh Local and Best said...

Fried eggplants are one of my favorite ways to eat this spongy vegetable, and that is a very good trick! The horseradish mustard dip sounds amazing. You are so creative!

Jenn said...

pigpig: ;-D

Donna: It pretty much it.

Debbie: give it a try. It's much healthier this way.

5 Star, HH, Dhanggit, Fresh: Thanks.

TavoLini: I love eggplant parmesan, but I don't think I've had then the oven-fried version yet. That's the next thing i shall do with them.

Lana said...

Love it, love it, love it! And can't wait to try it.

Mary Bergfeld said...

I love breaded eggplant. This looks delicious and is far healthier than my current recipe.

Christo Gonzales said...

this type of 'frying' that you do is so healthy - I need to start doing it to -

Nutmeg Nanny said...

Delicious! I think I would like this much better than fried. Such a healthy way of eating :)

Diana said...

What a cool tip about the salt! Thanks for sharing! :) Hope your day is very lucky indeed!

Andrea@WellnessNotes said...

I love oven-fried eggplant. And I love dipping sauces! Sounds & looks awesome!

theUngourmet said...

I've been hiding in bed all day with the covers over my head! :D

Mmm! That dip is marvelous and even though I don't usually care for eggplant, this looks wonderful as well! I would love to give it a try!

Pam said...

They look perfectly crisp and delicious.

teresa said...

oh these look so good, i love panko, it's the best!

i didn't even realize it was fri the 13th until now. i'm a bit superstitous, i knock on wood all the time!

Anonymous said...

I love anything fried. Yummy!

Sophia said...

YAY! One of the free swag from the Foodbuzz Fest was panko. I know where to use up now!
Unforunately, I just tossed out my eggplants since they kind of shriveled up...:-(

Jenn said...

Lana, Andrea, Pam: Thanks.

Mary: Give it a try.

Doggy: Go for it!

Nutmeg, Ungourmet, Hummingbird: :-D

Diana: You're welcome!

Teresa: Once you use panko, you never go back to the other stuff.

Sophia: Enjoy!!

Lele said...

That sounds fab! I used to eat embarrassing amounts of Costco's frozen prefried eggplant. Yours is healthier, and, I'm SURE, better!

Joy said...

Jen you are so talented with your multiple talents in photography, food film you are quite the artist! I am a huge fan of eggplant and this recipe looks really good with the horseradish dip and the delicate breading. nom nom nom

Reeni said...

This is so much easier than frying. And less messy. A delicious and healthy snack - love the dipping sauce! said...

I fully match with whatever thing you have presented us.

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