Monday, March 12, 2007
Eat baigani when there's nothing else
The most common food on the farm in Labasa is eggplant or baigani, mostly the long purple kind. The picture here shows a whole variety of baigans. I believe it’s a vegetable that originated in India. If there’s nothing else to eat, there’s still always a few baigan plants nearby. Some people hate them – such as one of our sons – but I reckon there are at least ten ways to cook them, some more tastier than others. I’ve seen them used in cafes here in Geelong, just blanched or sort of barbecued and there isn’t much taste at all - the chef ought to use garlic or herbs. It’s a poor man’s food I reckon, not gourmet.
Here’s my list:
1. fried as fritters in rounds – very good with lots of salt and pepper
2. fried in pieces dipped in a batter made with flour and egg – okay
3. barbecued with a few spices – okay
4. curried with potatoes - okay
5. with tomatoes as a chutney - okay
6. with meat as a curry – it really is an extender to feed more people
7. part of a fried rice dish – well, if there’s nothing else
8. sliced and cooked in coconut cream – not for me
9. with tinned fish - as an extender to feed more
10. stuffed with other things – too much work
Of course when the floods damage the food gardens in Labasa, once, and even twice, there isn't even baigan to eat. Sobosobo, how those people suffer in these times.