[Market-farming] Eggplant Question
Karen Sutherland & Roots Farm
rootsfarm at marpin.dm
Thu Jul 28 11:46:43 EDT 2005
Eggplant is one of our specialties and we grow more than 20 varieties.
The Asian varieties that I know (apart from the green Thai types and
some long white varieties are quite firm) vary in softness but are all
considerably softer and have shorter shelf life than the usual
supermarket fare. They are also more delicate in flavor and rarely get
bitter before seeds develop. (A good eggplant, Lynn, to start tasting
-- you may end up liking.)
We make sure the eggplant is picked at shiny stage, totally dry, and if
we need to hold for longer than overnight, refrigerate in thick plastic
bags. Even the soft varieties will hold well for close to, sometimes
more than a week (although we wouldn't market any that had been held for
more than a few days because of their expected reduced life. Instead we
would enjoy or convert to value-added product baba ganouj which can be
frozen and held.) It is important that the eggplant not be in the
coldest part of the fridge as there will be damage if they are too cold.
By the way, some of our customers have marked preferences for age/size
of eggplant. We make sure we have a variety -- which happens anyway
when we are picking mostly once, maybe twice a week.
All best wishes,
*Karen Sutherland **
Organic Produce : Fruits, Roots, Vegetables & Herbs*
rootsfarm at marpin.dm <mailto:rootsfarm at marpin.dm>
robert schuler wrote:
>Lynn you are doing everything right. Some varieties are softer than others.
>You harvest and display them like all eggplant on the stand away from direct
>sunlight. They tend to hold for two days in firm condition then get soft and
>wrinkly. When they get soft I toss them. I try to only pick as much as I can
>sell in a day often I will pick twice a day to insure freshness and quality.
>Whatever you do don't put them in the cooler...Bob.
>Sunny Meadow Farm
>Lynn Wigglesworth wrote:
>>I don't know much about eggplant (don't like it much so I rarely grow it).
>>I'm growing several varieties in my market garden this year because a
>>couple people asked for it. The long oriental type are soft...should they
>>be that way? I harvest them at about 8-10" long. The big dark purple ones
>>in the store are hard as rocks, and my other varieties are firm but not
>>hard. Is 'soft' normal for long orientals or are they under/over ripe?
>>Also, should they be refrigerated? I normal leave the veggies out in the
>>farm stand during the day and refridgerate everything except tomatoes at
>>night (I'm only open 3 days a week and harvest fresh every week...give
>>away or feed any excess to the sheep after market days)
>>Tioga County, PA
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