I can't remember where I heard/read this so it might just be
bogus...Those big purple eggplants can have a "dash"-type bottom or a
"dot"-type bottom. The dots are if the eggplant is female. Female
eggplants have more seeds.
Does this sound familiar to anybody?
Here are some other things that I can find in cookbooks that I have at
taut, smooth skin
no blemishes or soft spots
stay away from larger ones which may be overripe and bitter
(unless you need it for stuffing or big slices)
you should use eggplant soon after purchase
white eggplant is milder, but usually more expensive.
When you use the eggplant, if the seeds are dark, the eggplant is
riper (and may even be overripe)
Sometimes, you can salt eggplants that you think might be on the
bitter side. This works if you need to cut it into chunks or slices.
Sometimes removing the skin helps. A lot depends on whether you like
the texture of eggplant skins.
If you are putting the eggplant into a tasty stew (check out the
Armenian lentil stew I added to the archives), don't bother with
You can salt the eggplant after cutting it up. Just put the eggplant
in a colander or something and sprinkle it with a lot of salt (you can
rinse the salt off later) By the time 15 or 20 minutes have passed,
you should see clear brownish liquid dripping out. I rinse the
eggplant after about 30 minutes and then pat it dry with paper
towels. Other people skip the rinsing step.