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Recipe Contest Runner-Up: Spicy Indian Eggplant

Photos by Shane Redsar
Photos by Shane Redsar

It was difficult choosing just one winner of our eggplant recipe contest. Chef Ernest Miller of the Hollywood Farmer's Kitchen and I were forced to take many, many bites of the finalists. But this was such a close second, we had to publish it, too!

This Spicy Indian Eggplant recipe comes from L.A. resident Jessa Forsythe-Crane, who adapted it from Randomgirl.com. She thought she didn't like eggplant, but made this on a whim one day -- Jessa loved it so much she added "OMG" to its name.

Check back here tomorrow to find the winning recipe. Until then, try this one out - it'd be perfect over basmati rice.

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Best Spicy Indian Eggplant OMG
1 teaspoon fresh ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
3/4 cup water
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 medium eggplant, peeled
2 tablespoons Earth Balance (or your oil of choice)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Combine spices in a small bowl.

In a measuring cup, stir together water, sugar, and vinegar.

Cut eggplant into 1-inch cubes.

In a large non-stick skillet, heat oil over medium heat until foam subsides, then cook spices, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add eggplant and salt and toss to coat with spice mixture.

Stir vinegar mixture and add to eggplant mixture. Simmer mixture, covered, without stirring, 10 minutes or until eggplant is just tender.  

Uncover skillet and cook eggplant mixture at a rapid simmer, without stirring, until liquid is almost evaporated and eggplant is slightly charred (but not burned) on the bottom, about 15 minutes.

Remove skillet from heat and let eggplant stand, covered, 5 minutes.

Serve with liberal sprinkles of fresh cilantro.