Tired of boring old purple eggplants? Why not try the dinkier and altogether more striking aubergine alternative, the ghostly white eggplant.
What are white eggplants?
White eggplants are white because they lack anthocyanin pigments. They have been traditionally used in Asian medicine since the 14th century and are administered in the Indian tradition of Ayurvedic medicine to treat asthma.
White vs. purple eggplants?
If you've never come across white eggplants, the shiny white skinned fruits tend to be smaller than their purple allies, at three to six inches long and egg or pear shaped.
While the skin of a white eggplant may be tougher than purple eggplants and should be peeled off before cooking, the dense white flesh makes them better suited to baking, steaming or frying as they can hold their shape better.
What does white eggplant taste like?
The cream white flesh inside also tends to be denser, creamier, milder, less acidic and less bitter, as well as having more seeds. Some white varieties can also be sweeter than their violet cousins.
The nutritional benefits of white eggplants
Low in calories and containing nutrients such as potassium, vitamin A, vitamin B-complex and vitamin C you don't miss out on any of the nutritional qualities either.
The names of many white eggplant cultivars are, ironically, quite colourful: caspar, ghostbuster, Japanese white egg, paloma, and white comet.
If you like this, try another exciting eggplant variety: The red eggplant of Rotonda.
Recipes with white eggplants
White aubergines can be used in recipes, just like purple eggplants.
White eggplant soup
Or simply try your hand at a comforting eggplant lasagne with lashings of gorgonzola. The sweet ooziness of the soft eggplant and the umami bite of the salty blue cheese create a delicious combination.
Persian eggplant and tomato salad
If you’re looking for a healthy meatless option that uses eggplants (all colours and varieties welcome), toss together a Persian eggplant and tomato salad. The grilled eggplant and halloumi cheese bring substance, while the zebra tomatoes and gem-like pomegranate seeds bring colour. Sesame, pickled onions, lemon, honey, garlic, and other spices send flavour rippling through the dish.
If you don’t want eggplant to take centre stage, eggplant schnitzel appetisers with aromatic herbs in the breading could kick things off nicely. Perfect served with a tangy tomato dip for a vegan cocktail party.
Or slice the aubergine long and thin and roll it around a mass of breadcrumbs, tomato, parmesan, mozzarella, and garlic. Pop it in a sizzling pan of olive oil, then lob these stuffed eggplants into your mouth and enjoy.