Friday, August 27, 2010

Garden to Table Challenge - week 2

I was so pleased to find delicious inspiration (and garden inspiration too!) in the posts of the bloggers who joined the first weekly Garden to Table Challenge. I look forward to all that is to to come with late summer's cornucopia!


Eggplants have been difficult for me to grow in my own garden. Who ever knew there was such a thing as a flea beetle? But plant some eggplants and the proof will be literally pinpointed in the leaves.

Fortunately, my dad - with more garden experience, time, space, sun, water, and quality soil - is able to grow eggplants (along with everything else) like gangbusters - despite a few bites from the little nuisances.

Below, you see the long, thin Japanese eggplants on the right, favored over globe eggplants for their thinner skins, fewer seeds, and more delicate flavor.

Here's a side dish my mom made that I couldn't believe was so simple and delicious. It was another one we finished before dinner was ready. I've learned that pretending to be helpful in the kitchen allows plenty of opportunities to pass by the kitchen counter and sneak bites (my parents make good food, not well-mannered children).

  • Steam the whole eggplants upright until tender. Cut in half lengthwise and cut/tear apart with fork. You're not trying to mash it up, just tear it a bit so it's able to hold the sauce.
  • Mix up a sauce of: 3-4 chopped garlic cloves, about 1 teaspoon sesame oil, about 1/3 cup or so of light soy sauce, and a splash of red wine vinegar. Play around with the proportions to suit your taste (we rarely ever measure anything).


Your turn - how are you eating or preserving your harvests this week? Tell me about it on this weekly Garden to Table Challenge day!


  1. Hi Wendy, The eggplant dish looks great, and easy, which is my style.

  2. I haven't ever tried eggplant but this looks pretty easy. I bet it is delicious!
    I am taking your challenge and I actually made it to week 2. Not so sure about week 3. It is fun thinking about what I will make with the spuds I get to dig up. If there are any down there. Ha.

    Thanks for hosting and giving this opportunity to fellow bloggers.

  3. I *heart* eggplant and have a ton that are almost ready to pick. Thanks for the recipe!! =0)

  4. Hi Wendy,

    You've got more participants this week. Awesome.

    I can't play this week as I'm headed out for vacation.

    I just wanted to tell you that there were so many other benefits to having my girls in dance. Lots of big benefits and lots of little benefits. For example, they had to wear make-up at an early age for recital and for competitions. By the time real make-up time came around, neither of them were all that excited about it, so I never had to deal with tons of make-up in their early teens. I know that's not a big deal, but just one more benefit.

    We are big SYTYCD fans here as well and we have gone to see the shows when they come to Detroit. We will be there again this October. It is the BEST live show I've ever been with. It helps if you get in touch with your inner 14 year old.

    Have a great week.

  5. I have yet to try an eggplant dish I actually like, but that one sounds worth trying. If I can find some at farmer's market next week, I just might have to give it a try!
    LOL @ flea beetles - I kept reading about them at the OG message board, and always sort of felt a little smug that I'd never had to deal with them. Until they found my turnips. No turnip greens for me this year, stupid beetles. :o( It's amazing that such tiny things can do so much damage, isn't it?

  6. Eggplants grew well for me this year, thankfully. That recipe sounds pretty good. I may have to try that. Thanks

  7. WEndy, you need to make a badge for your garden to table challenge. Makes it easy to link to ya and it really stands out on other's blogs..just sayin...:)

  8. I'm afraid I'm an appreciative but passive bystander in this series of posts. Don't grow much food but do love gardening and cooking. Thanks for this Wendy, another superbly simple appealing dish. love eggplants.
    Still thinking about my parsley harvest. I guess it isn't a major component of dishes but it seems to go in everything that is savoury.

  9. You remind me of an eggplant recipe I haven't made in a long time. Hmmm - where is that?

  10. Grew an eggplant in the flower border last summer called 'Dancer'. It was a lovely, pearly lavender and tasty, too.

  11. I finally have eggplant growing. This looks like a delicious recipe.

  12. Hi Wendy - I posted a link twice by error. I posted as Ria Malloy, then thought I had edited it to read: Grow It Eat It. But instead, it posted twice. If you could delete the post with my name and keep the one with Grow It Eat It, I would appreciate it. Thanks! Ria

  13. Ria - It's a miracle I'm able to do what I do on this blog. Sorry, but I don't know how to delete one of your links (guess this is where the spammers jump in on the action)

    Catmint - all bystanders welcome!!! :)

    Thanks for posting and linking, or just commenting, or just plain reading!!!

  14. Let me know if you want some help with the badge. I haven't ever made one but I am sure I could~ or get someone to show me. BTW I have some Viagra to sell as well as some Miley Cyris photos. Maybe we could incorporate her into the badge;)

  15. Better late than never - I just linked today! But I'd like to participate more and will try to be on time next week :)


My awesome gardening friends...thanks for leaving a comment! I don't typically repond here, but I love knowing who you are so I can visit your blog as well.

btw - if you're trying to show me nude Miley Cyrus photos, sell me nikes or viagra or antibiotics, or encourage my lovely garden readers to visit your site on solar panel construction, or seo-whatevers, sorry, but I'm not publishing your comment. If you want to moderate my blog - well, I can't keep you too busy, and the pay would be horrible. And lastly, no. I'm not interested in Club Penguin cheat codes. Thanks anyway.

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