Thai eggplant is not the usual purplish, elongated kind that you see often—it can be pale green, medium green, or white with green stripes. This golf-ball looking vegetable is a staple in many Thai cuisines—Thais eat them as often as Filipinos eat their rice. Thai eggplant is unlike any other eggplant variations since it can be eaten raw, normally with some dips or in crudite and salads. For some, it is commonly known as “round eggplant,” but for Thais, it is known as “ma keua praw.”
Thai Eggplant Uses
Many vegetarians have used this healthy vegetable as a substitute for meat. They can be consumed raw and cooked by frying, grilling, baking, stewing, pickling, stuffing, and more. Thai eggplants can be prepared and added to curries, fried and battered into a tempura side dish, or sliced and stir-fried.
Thai eggplants are also rich in dietary nutrients like potassium, antioxidants, manganese, and fiber. With calories as low as 25 per serving, Thai eggplant is ideal for those watching their diet. It can also reduce the risk of high blood pressure, streamline the digestive system, and lower parasitic infections. Thai eggplant has also been known to have similar properties with insulin when it comes to lowering blood sugar. Because of that, it helps in relieving many symptoms of diabetes.
The fresher and younger the eggplants, the better they taste. Overmatured eggplants will have a bitter taste, plus they will look unappetizing and too brown on the inside. Fresh eggplants can be stored at the bottom of the refrigerator for a week. If you have an excess, you can freeze them into a casserole for future use or transform them into a delicious pickle or relish.
Thai Eggplants in Thai Dishes
There are a variety of ways you can incorporate Thai eggplant in your Thai cuisine.
- Raw – the easiest way to enjoy Thai eggplant is to eat them raw with some spicy dips or add in a healthy vegetarian salad. Wash them thoroughly, take out the stems, cut or slice them into wedges or small portion, and be ready for an eggplant feast.
- Curry – Thai green and red curries will always have Thai eggplant included in the dish. No need to remove the skin since they add more flavor and texture to the dish. Thai eggplants easily absorb the flavor and aroma of the curry paste, chilies, basil, kaffir limes, coconut cream, and any vegetables or meat incorporated in the dish.
- Stir-fry Eggplant Dishes – Thai people use eggplants as part of their spicy stir-fry dishes. Add some garlic, basil leaves, meat (or chicken), and curry paste to the dish to create that spicy side dish to your mains.
Thai Eggplant Recipe Ideas
- Thai Green Curry
- Thai Eggplants with Basil & Tomatoes
- Thai Eggplants and Chickpeas in Peanut Masala
- Miso Beef Stuffed Thai Eggplant
- Northern Thai Eggplant Salad
- Nigerian Eggplant Stew
- Thai Spicy Eggplant with Sweet Basil
- Thai Eggplant Stir-fry w/ Basil and Chili Paste
- Roasted Thai Eggplant with Cherry Tomatoes and Basil
When in Thailand, do not miss trying out these delicious Thai eggplant infused cuisine. You can be more adventurous and eat them raw and fresh.
If you are looking for good food in Bangkok, get in touch with us today to book your table!