Okinawa Sweet Potato Want something new and exciting for dinner? Try these lavender Okinawa sweet potatoes...or the dozens of other exotic and heirloom vegetables we present for your consideration. Photo courtesy of




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ELIZABET TRAVIS is an Editorial Intern at THE NIBBLE.



July 2008

Product Reviews / Main Nibbles / Vegetables

A Glossary Of Exotic & Heirloom Vegetables

Page 6: Exotic & Heirloom Eggplant Types


CAPSULE REPORT: This is Page 6 of a 15-page glossary of a glossary of exotic and heirloom vegetables. Click on the black links below to see other pages.



We’ll keep adding to this glossary as we find new types of eggplant.

Eggplant Get To Know Me

Chinese Eggplant

Long and violet to purple in color, the Chinese eggplant is sweeter and more tender than a typical American eggplant. Its skin is soft, so it is rarely peeled. It is interchangeable in almost any eggplant recipe.

Available year-round.

chinese eggplant

Indian Eggplant & Indian Paint Eggplant

The Indian eggplant is known for its tenderness and sweet flavor. It is small and round with smooth skin and a red-purple color. The skin does not need to be peeled; it can be used interchangeably with the American eggplant. Another variety, the Indian paint eggplant, has white stripes. It is more fragile, but are perfect for stuffing and baking.

Available year-round; Indian paint eggplant available April to September & November to January.

Indian Eggplant

Japanese Eggplant

Similar to the Chinese eggplant, it has a thin skin and a sweet, delicate flavor. The Japanese eggplant is slender and can be green, pink, white, lavender or purple. Its calyus, or stem, is most often dark purple.

Available year-round.

japanese eggplant

Pingtung Long Eggplant

This long, dark purple eggplant is very tender and sweet. It is a very popular variety in Asia, and is named after its native town of Ping Tung, Taiwan. It is best prepared grilled with salt and olive oil.

Seeds can be purchased at

Thai Eggplant

This golf ball-size eggplant is much more bitter than the American eggplant, especially the seeds. which should be removed before cooking. It comes in a variety of colors, but is typically green with yellow or white stripes. It is often cubed and used in hot chile or curry dishes.

Available year-round.

thai eggplant

White Eggplant

Eggplant got its name because it was originally small and white, and thus looked like eggs hanging from the plant. Today, the white eggplant has a tough skin and a creamy, delicate flesh.

Available year-round.

White Eggplant

Continue To Page 6: Eggplant

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