Photo credit: Tijana Drndarski
Eggplant is the name for aubergines in the US, Australia, New Zealand, and Canada. It is called aubergine in the UK, Ireland and Quebec. In South Asia and South Africa, it is called brinjal.
It is a plant species in the nightshade family Solanaceae. Solanum melongena is grown worldwide for its edible fruit. Most commonly purple, the spongy, absorbent fruit is used in several cuisines. Typically used as a vegetable in cooking, it is a berry by botanical definition. As a member of the genus Solanum, it is related to the tomato and potato. Like the tomato, its skin and seeds can be eaten, but, like the potato, it is always eaten cooked.
Eggplant is nutritionally low in macronutrient and micronutrient content, but the capability of the fruit to absorb oils and flavours into its flesh through cooking expands its use in the culinary arts. Source: Wikipedia
With all of our recipes, we like to make a connection with Belarus because that’s where our beneficiaries are after all. So here are some fascinating statistics…
- Annually the agricultural organizations and individual farms of the country produce more than 560,000 tonnes of vegetables, including almost 115,000 tonnes in greenhouses.
- There are 21 major greenhouse farms with a total area of winter greenhouses at nearly 250 hectares.
- Over the past 10 years, 110.5 hectares of energy-saving greenhouses have been commissioned. As a whole, the production of greenhouse vegetables rose 1.7 times in 2014 over 2005.
- The winter greenhouses grow 15 varieties of crops, particularly cucumbers, tomatoes, aubergines, peppers, lettuces, rocket, basil, celery, dill, parsley, coriander, sorrel and other green crops.
If you are travelling through Minsk and want to sample a recommended aubergine speciality, why not go ‘Georgian’ at Khinkalnya Restaurant, Internatsionalnaya 25, Minsk 220030.
Went here 2 nights on the run it was so good. Never had a chance to taste khingali before because I don’t eat meat. Here they do cheese khingali and they were well worth waiting for. The aubergine phali is to die for – had it both nights, the khachapuri and even just the plain flatbread was delicious. – Trip Advisor
If you would like to learn how to grow your own aubergines please click here.
Check out Michelle’s delicious aubergine recipes:
- Stuffed Aubergines in a curry & coconut Dal
- Miso & ginger glazed aubergines
- Aubergine, spinach and lentil curry