(smacking) (clicking) – [Instructor] Mom may have
said eat your vegetables, but how do you fit them
into a healthy diet? Through the Penn State
Extension Nutrition Links Produce Video series,
you will learn how to buy, store, cook, and
enjoy a variety of produce. In this video, we’ll
take a look at eggplant. A one half cup serving of cubed eggplant contains only 10 calories and it’s a great source of folic
acid, fiber, and potassium. Potassium helps with fluid
balance and nerve function. Eggplant comes in a variety of colors from white to purple to green and with skin patterns that range from solid to speckled to striped. The type most commonly
seen at grocery stores and farmer’s markets is
a solid, almost black, shade of purple. It has a pleasantly bitter taste and, depending on how it is prepared, can have a creamy or meaty texture. When selecting, look for eggplant with smooth and shiny skin. No matter what variety, the
color should be vibrant and free of discolored patches,
wrinkles, and scars. The flesh should be firm
and have a slight give when gently pressed. If the skin bounces back, the eggplant is ripe and ready to use. When young, the skin
is tender and editable. As it ages, the skin gets
tough and needs to be peeled. Store your eggplant uncut and
unwashed in your refrigerator in a sealed plastic bag up to one week. Eggplant can be served
in a variety of ways, sliced thinly and included in stir fry’s, chopped and cooked into stews and curries, tossed with olive oil and
roasted with other vegetables like onions, peppers,
zucchini, or tomatoes, or sauteed, roasted, or baked
and served in Italian dishes. When cooking eggplant, make
sure it is thoroughly cooked and tender for the best flavor. Now, let’s take a look at a recipe you might prepare for your table. Mediterranean Roasted Eggplant
is a quick, easy recipe that your family will enjoy. It calls for two small eggplants,
one cup spaghetti sauce, one fourth cup plain
yogurt, one garlic clove, and vegetable cooking spray or olive oil. To prepare this recipe, you’ll want to preheat your
oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit. Wash and then slice off the
stem end of the eggplant. This recipe calls for
one half inch slices. Prepare a baking pan by lightly coating with vegetable cooking oil spray. Place the eggplant
slices in a single layer on the prepared pan. Next, spoon spaghetti
sauce over each slice. Bake for 30 minutes or
until the eggplant is soft. While the eggplant is baking,
make the yogurt topping. Finely mince the garlic then stir the yogurt and garlic together. Remove the eggplant from the oven and drizzle with the yogurt sauce. And there you have it, an
easy and nutritious way to prepare eggplant that
can be the foundation for a healthy meal. One serving contains only 70 calories and here are a couple of tasty
variations on this recipe, if you’re interested. You could finely chop some
fresh herbs, such as basil or oregano, and sprinkle
them on top of the eggplant before serving. Or, you could top the
sauce with a small amount of Parmesan cheese before baking. Here’s what to remember about eggplant, no matter what variety
you buy, you should look for eggplant that has
smooth and shiny skin. Eggplant stays good in your
refrigerator up to one week. It can easily be added to
stir fries, curries, stews, and many other types of dishes. For more information on
Pennsylvania produce, visit the PennState Extension website.