Globe eggplant is recognized by its shiny purple skin and large bulbous physique. When cooked, the spongy flesh transforms into a wonderful creamy textured fruit.
Enjoy it in an eggplant Parmesan, roasted or sautéed, and it’s ideal for an eggplant purée.
This week I prepared a roasted eggplant spread topped with heirloom tomato and burrata, the Fix of the Week, elsewhere on this page.
Eggplant is a good source of dietary fiber, potassium and the antioxidant anthocyanin that is often associated with purple foods. Eggplant is also an excellent addition to curry dishes or when grilled.
Globe eggplant can be found at most weekly Santa Barbara certified farmers’ markets from several local growers. Price averages $2 each.
Red tiger heirloom tomato
This is a variety I look forward to annually from Her Family Farm at the Saturday Santa Barbara farmers’ market.
With streaky alternating stripes of red and orange, these tomatoes make for a beautiful presentation on the plate, especially when cut thick and highlighted prominently.
While red tiger heirloom tomatoes tend to have a milder flavor, you will get a nice level of sweetness and fruity presence throughout. Use them in a caprese salad, in a sandwich or really any way you typically incorporate tomatoes into your dishes.
This variety has a nice meaty texture.
Price averages $4 per pound.
Dapple dandy pluot
Also referred to as a “dinosaur egg,” this plum and apricot hybrid is probably the most popular to emerge all season, hailed for its large size and sweet juicy flesh.
It’s an excellent, all-around eating fruit.
The dapple dandy pluot is also nice when simply sliced and served, and it’s ideal for a hike or the beach.
I find that dapple dandy pluots pair quite well with an array of nuts, honey, melons, cheeses, cucumbers and basil.
Dapple dandy pluots are available from Burkdoll Farms at all weekly Santa Barbara certified farmers’ markets from Burkdoll Farms.
Price is $4 per pound, or $3.50 per pound when purchasing 6 pounds or more.