We’ve gotten in some delightfully adorable local eggplant, all festive in their stripes, from Shanti & Pete, our friends at Muddy Miss Farms. We’re coming up on the peak of local season and it’s time to eat like kings!
Pete & Shanti are young farmers “passionate about maintaining biodiversity in agriculture, preserving heirloom crop varieties, and protecting Iowa’s prairies, woods and wetlands,” and I really recommend reading a little more about them – including where their name came from – here. They farm sustainably about 10 miles down the road in Riverside.
‘Naan Better’ Eggplant Curry Salad
Contributed by Genie Maybanks, New Pi marketing
Celebrate local eggplant with your greens of choice, flatbread, and curry dressing for a gorgeous salad.
Naan (feel free to substitute pita bread)
1 c. water
1 package (2 ¼ t. – we carry it in the bulk department) active dry yeast
¼ c. plus one pinch sugar
4 ½ c. flour
3 T. milk
4 T. oil, plus additional for the griddle
1 garlic clove, smashed and finely chopped
Mix together water, yeast, and pinch of sugar. Let sit 10 min.
Mix remaining ingredients – except oil and garlic – with yeast mixture. Cover bowl with a damp cloth and let rise 1 hour.
Punch down and let rise for another 30 min.
Combine oil with garlic in a small dish. Heat skillet and spray or drizzle with oil.
Stretch a baseball-sized piece of dough to make an irregular flatbread, approximately 8 inches in diameter. Cook on hot griddle for 5 minutes per side, or to desired color, brushing with garlic oil mixture before flipping. Repeat.
1 small eggplant, cut into bite-sized pieces with skin on
2 T. oil
1 t. coarse salt
Toss eggplant in oil and salt. Broil on center rack until brown, approximately 10 minutes.
Genie’s Curry Dressing
4 T. peanut oil
2 T. Champagne vinegar
2 T. mayo
1 T. curry powder
1 green onion, finely chopped
½ t. chili powder
½ t. honey
Serve: eggplant, warm or cold, over spinach or baby greens with warm flatbread and curry dressing. Garnish with chopped hot or mild peppers, if desired.