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Fermented Eggplant

I tasted and fell in love with Italian Style Fermented Eggplant many years ago. This recipe replicates the taste I remember which makes me very happy. The fermented eggplant will be spicy from the garlic and spices with a salty sour taste. It's meant to be served as a condiment.. 

Ingredients:

  • 2 large eggplants (about 750g)
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano (or a bunch of fresh oregano) 
  • 1 teaspoon chilli flakes
  • 15g sea salt (not iodised)

Method:

  1. Peel and cut the eggplants into fine strips - think leather shoe laces.  I used my V slicer for this step. 
  2. Mix the eggplant strips and salt in a bowl using your hands to gently massage the vegetable. The strips will soften and begin to weep moisture.Mince the garlic and chop the fresh oregano if you are using it.
  3. Mix all the ingredients together and press the mixture (including any liquid) into a fermentation jar. You should notice more brownish brine has been released at this stage. Continue pressing the mixture until there is a layer of brine sitting above the vegetable.
  4. Screw a lid with a fermentation lock on tightly. Set the fermentation lock with water.
  5. Leave in a warm place to ferment for up to four weeks (timing depends on your room temperature and desired flavour). Keep checking every week until you're happy with the taste. Refrigerate and it should keep for a few months.

Notes:

If you don't have a fermentation jar, no problem. Use any large jar with an airtight lid and check the jar twice a day to start with. Release the accumulated gas from the fermentation by unscrewing the lid until you hear it hiss.  Screw the lid tight again. Continue the burping process until fermentation ceases - could be a few days or a week or so.