Wednesday 6 January
Barbara's Christmas gift was a copy of J. Kenji López-Alt's The Food Lab, which offers scientific explanations for any number of odd food procedures. For example, it's not any bitter liquid inside eggplant that needs to be removed somehow, it's the spongy air pockets. The bitterness comes from storing eggplant in too cold a place, so we hauled ours out of the refrigerator and prepared to cook it by halving this recipe.
As it's winter, we have no fresh mint, but there's plenty of hardy fresh oregano in the garden, so we reversed the recipe and combined that with dried mint, and provided a shower of chopped parsley instead of basil over the top at the end.
The result was a sort of Provençal take on eggplant parmesan, but a lot quicker than either The Food Lab's Americanized version or Karen's Nanny's authentic recipe.