Baby Yellow Eggplant
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Baby Yellow eggplants are small, round or oval eggplants that are white when unripe, and develop an attractive, yellow-golden color when they ripen. They grow on shrub-like plants that reach almost a meter in height. Baby Yellow eggplants grow in clusters and hang from long, slender stalks. The smooth-skinned Baby Yellow eggplants are around 7 centimeters long by 5 centimeters wide. When cut open, they have a white, fleshy interior and a ball of brown seeds. They do not have the mildly earthy, sweet flavor that larger, soft and fleshy eggplants are known for. Rather, Baby Yellow eggplants are crunchy and bitter in taste.
Baby Yellow eggplants are available year-round.
Baby Yellow eggplants are a Thai heirloom eggplant variety that is relatively rare. They are called "baby" eggplants because of their small size. The Baby Yellow eggplant may be referred to as Thai Round Yellow eggplants and Golden Eggs. They are botanically known as Solanum melongena, and are a member of the Solanaceae or nightshade family along with potatoes, tomatoes and peppers. Thai eggplants come in a variety of colors and sizes. They range from long, slender finger-like varieties, to small, round eggplants the size of peas.
Baby Yellow eggplants contain dietary fiber, calcium, phosphorous, potassium and manganese. They also contain vitamins A and C.
In Thailand, Baby Yellow eggplants are most commonly used in curries. They are known for their bitter taste. In order to reduce the bitterness, the seeds are first removed, and the flesh is then soaked in water. Baby Yellow eggplants may then be used in cooked dishes such as coconut milk-based curries. Baby Yellow eggplants pair well with chilies in stir fries, and can be used interchangeably or alongside the more common green variety of Thai baby eggplant. Baby Yellow eggplants may be used in papaya salads. These eggplants discolor quickly after being cut and exposed to air, so they should be quickly added to a dish once they are cleaned and cut open. Baby Yellow eggplants may be refrigerated, where they will be good for at least 2 days.
Baby Yellow eggplants, like other Thai eggplants, are known for the many small, round varieties that have firm, crunchy textures. Thai people love eggplants, and some folk stories feature eggplants. In one tale, a young peasant girl marries a prince after she brings him plants that originally sprang from a magical eggplant. In Thailand, Baby Yellow eggplants are said to be good for those with stomach ulcers.
The Thai eggplant was first cultivated in India, where it can be found growing wild, however, it is not known when the Baby Yellow eggplant was first grown. Botanists believe that ancient civilizations in Southeast Asia were the first to grow, and gradually develop, different types of eggplants. Eggplants were also grown in China as early as 59 BCE. The Chinese people still incorporate some of the hybridization and cross-breeding techniques when developing new varieties of eggplant. Like other Thai eggplants, Baby Yellow eggplants do well in various soil conditions, and prefer hot temperatures with full sunlight.