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Special Diet Information

Coumadin® (Warfarin)
This recipe is safe for Coumadin (warfarin) users.

Lactose
This recipe contains cheese and some of those who are lactose intolerant may be able to tolerate it.

Sodium
This is a low sodium recipe.

GERD / Acid Reflux
This recipe contains GERD triggers and those with GERD may wish to avoid it.

Gluten Sensitivity
This recipe is NOT safe for those who are sensitive to gluten.

 

"I realize that when I met you at the turkey curry buffet, I was unforgivably rude, and wearing a reindeer jumper."
-Helen Fielding, Author of Bridget Jones Diary

The refrigerator light goes on...

Paneer is a great cheese especially for those on a low sodium diet. It is an Indian cheese that is sort of a cross between mozzarella and tofu. It has a good firm texture and soft milk flavor. The best part is that most are made with very little salt. It used to be hard to find but is now widely available in many groceries. If you can't find it, use fresh mozzarella, but add only 1/8 tsp. salt.

Eggplant and Salt

There are as many variations on the reasons for using salt on eggplant as there are celebrity chefs.

First and foremost, there is only one reason to use salt on eggplant and that is because it has a very high moisture content. When eggplant is broiled or cooked in a pan, it will usually steam and end up being mushy. The solution is to draw the moisture out. By sprinkling salt on the eggplant, water is drawn to the surface.

I have seen recommendations for using kosher salt. The only difference between kosher salt and regular table salt is the size of the granules. Crystals of salt (no matter what the size) dissolve in the moisture on the surface of the eggplant and form a concentrated salt solution. The high concentration of salt then pulls moisture from inside the fruit. Rinsing and patting the eggplant dry won't result in it absorbing a significant amount of water (it is porous but not a sponge). The more salt you use or the longer it is on the eggplant, the more effective this technique will be.

The other reason given for salting eggplant is to remove bitterness. This simply would be a waste of your time. Eggplant becomes bitter as it ages. All of the salt in the world can't change that. The key is to buy fresh eggplant and use it quickly. (See Choosing Eggplant.)


 

Curried Eggplant



Servings = 3 | Serving size =6 ounces eggplant with sauce and cheese

Cooking Time = 30 Minutes

This recipe can be multiplied by 2, 3, 4, 5.

This recipe makes fairly good leftovers. Reheat gently.

Serve with Jasmine Rice or Coconut Rice or Coconut Rice - Low Sodium Version or Jasmine Rice - Low Sodium Version or Brown Rice

2 tsp olive oil
2 tsp curry powder
1 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/8 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
1 small onion (diced)
1 clove garlic (sliced)
1 15 ounce can diced tomatoes
1/4 tsp salt
fresh ground black pepper (to taste)
spray olive oil
1 1/2 lb eggplant (sliced into rounds about 1/4 inch thick)
1/4 cup dried pumpkin seeds
4 ounces paneer cheese (cut into small cubes)

Place the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the curry powder, coriander, cumin and cayenne and cook, stirring frequently. Let the oil bubble but don't let the pan get too hot reduce the heat if the oil is bubbling too much. Cook for about 3 minutes.

Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes until the onions begin to soften. Add the tomatoes, salt and pepper. Cook for about 10 minutes and remove from the heat. Let cool and then puree until smooth. Set aside.

Clean the skillet and place over medium high heat. Spray with olive oil and add the eggplant slices. Cook on each side until slightly browned. Lightly spray with olive oil as needed. As the slices are cooked, remove them to paper towels.

Preheat the oven to 325F. Line a 9 inch oblong pyrex dish with foil.

When all the eggplant slices are cooked, place a layer of eggplant slices in the bottom of the pyrex dish. Top with 1/2 of the curry sauce and then 1/2 of the pumpkin seeds. Place a second layer of eggplant on top of the sauce. Use the remaining curry sauce and pumpkin seeds to cover the eggplant.

Place the dish in the oven and cook uncovered for 10 minutes.

Remove and sprinkle the cheese over the eggplant, then return the dish to the oven. Leave the dish in the oven for about 5 minutes, until the cheese is melted.

Nutrition Facts

Serving size = 6 ounces eggplant with sauce and cheese

Servings = 3

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Amount Per Serving

Calories 227 Calories from Fat 114
  % Daily Value
Total Fat 13g 20%
    Saturated Fat 5g 24%
    Monounsaturated Fat 5g  
    Trans Fat 0g  
Cholesterol 22mg 7%
Sodium 268mg 11%
Total Carbohydrates 20g 7%
    Dietary Fiber 8g 32%
    Sugars 8g  
Protein 11g  
Vitamin A 9% Vitamin C 30%
Calcium 21% Iron 20%
Vitamin K 6 mcg Potassium 767 mg
Magnesium 95 mg