One of my favourite food quiz questions is:
What vegetable has 3 names?
There are two answers, one being Baby Marrow, Courgette or Zucchini
And the other, Egg Fruit/Eggplant, Brinjal or Aubergine
I think Brinjals (my favourite name for this vegetable!) are the most versatile and delicious vegetable. You will receive many recipes from me for Brinjals in the future!
For the past 2 years I have found plants at my local garden centers for baby brinjals. These are the small egg shaped fruit that one sees in the Asian markets. They are also available at most good food stores. I must admit I do enjoy harvesting them fresh from my garden, but sometimes have to supplement the harvest from the supermarket. If you are planting them, buy 2-3 plants to ensure an adequate harvest. I also find that those planted near marigolds are less susceptible to insect bites.
There is no difference in flavour between the various shapes and colours, even though I have found the whites ones to have tougher and slightly bitter flesh. In bygone days brinjals often had a bitter flavour and we had to salt them to draw out those bitter flavours, but nowadays one does not have that bitter taint as the hybridization seems to have dealt with that.
The uses for brinjals are endless, but my favourite is a lovely light Kerala style curry, after all brinjals are said to have originated from South East Asia.