in

Oriental Eggplants

Eggplant oriental2

Eggplant orientalOriental-type eggplants are primarily slim, tapered or pointed elongated fruits that may remind you somewhat of a skinny, smooth and shiny cucumber. Oriental eggplants are mild, tender-skinned, creamy-fleshed, and quick-cooking eggplants.

The Oriental-type eggplants can be divided into two groups: Chinese eggplants and Japanese eggplants.

Chinese eggplants are lavender-blushed white, amethyst, and red-violet colored. They are delicate and low in seeds. The Chinese eggplant has a purple calyx, or stem cap.

Japanese eggplants are dark violet to inky-purple and are usually heavier and firmer than Chinese eggplants. The stem cap or calyx of the Japanese eggplant is bright green.

Remember both are distinguished by their slim, long look. You might ponder a moment if they aren’t labeled at your farmer’s stand.

Both the Chinese and Japanese eggplants have a sweet skin and flesh and tend to maintain their color when cooked (most eggplants tend to turn some shade of dull grayish brown when cooked).

Oriental eggplants can be cooked all ways but they will keep their form and flavor best when baked. If your recipe calls for eggplant slices even and neat, Oriental cucumbers are just what you are looking for. Another big plus: because Oriental eggplants contain less moisture than their bulbous counterparts, they absorb less cooking oil when cooked.

When you are choosing eggplants at the market be sure to select those that are firm and filled out with shiny skins. When an eggplant loses its gloss its quality deteriorates.

An eggplant with a smaller calyx or stem cap will often have fewer seeds than one with a large calyx. But seeds are rarely a concern with Oriental eggplants.

Written by Stephen Albert

Stephen Albert is a horticulturist, master gardener, and certified nurseryman who has taught at the University of California for more than 25 years. He holds graduate degrees from the University of California and the University of Iowa. His books include Vegetable Garden Grower’s Guide, Vegetable Garden Almanac & Planner, Tomato Grower’s Answer Book, and Kitchen Garden Grower’s Guide. His Vegetable Garden Grower’s Masterclass is available online. Harvesttotable.com has more than 10 million visitors each year.

Comments

Comments are closed.
  1. I have what I think is Chinese eggplant. They are long
    and started out green but have turned yellow. Is this
    a certain variety. Why are they yellow?

How To Grow Tips

How To Grow Tomatoes

How To Grow Peppers

How To Grow Broccoli

How To Grow Carrots

How To Grow Beans

How To Grow Corn

How To Grow Peas

How To Grow Lettuce

How To Grow Cucumbers

How To Grow Zucchini and Summer Squash

How To Grow Onions

How To Grow Potatoes

Cress Upland1

Cress: Kitchen Basics

Eggplant and grilled vegetables1

Cooking Eggplant