GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB)- In this monthly installment of You Grow It, I'll Cook It, Stefanie, Samara Hamblen shows a few seasonal dishes that cook well with your oven broiler.
As summer winds down, we are still enjoying many warm weather crops, including Long Eggplant. Often called Asian eggplant, these longer varieties have sweet flesh and tender skin. They cook very quickly. You can place these on a sheet pan, poke them with a fork (to prevent an explosion of eggplant) and place them in your broiler.
When broiling, place your oven rack 4 to 6 inches from the flame. Slide the pan in place. With an Electric Stove the best way to broil is with an open door, HOWEVER, Stefanie is using a gas stove which broils best when the door is closed.
The broiler is great for thin meats or seafood, veggies and fruit. The best tip is to keep food thin and flat to even cooking.
For a salad, pill off the skin and chop the eggplant into bite-size pieces. Mix in sautéed shallots and shiitake mushrooms. Perk it up with lemon zest. Dress with olive oil, lemon juice, a splash of vinegar and a dash of salt. Stir in a handful of chopped parsley and serve warm or at room temperature as is or with a crumble of feta cheese.
If you like Italian eggplant, peel and slice thinly, brush with olive oil and broil until tender. Layer with your favorite tomato sauce and bake until bubbly.
And if pineapple is appealing, just slice and broil in the oven until the edges are starting to brown. Broiling makes fruit taste delicious because it brings out the sweetness as the broiler browns or caramelize the sugars in the fruit.
Try to BROIL a little more often this month – it keeps your kitchen cooler and your food tasty. Think of it as grilling – upside down!
Join Stefanie Saturday morning, September 15th at the Haile Farmers Market’s Kitchen Corner. She will host a demo and letting everyone taste these recipes.
Next month on You Grow It, I’ll Cook It, Stick come back for a Community Cooking Lesson about using your Blender.