Eggplant Pontchartrain

Ever since Tujague’s started serving more than one choice of entree with its classic old Creole table d’hote lunches and dinners, they’ve had to create a few new ones. This is my minor reworking of an eggplant dish of theirs, topped with an herbal seafood sauce over fried eggplant. In crawfish season, you can substitute crawfish tails for the crabmeat and shrimp. Don’t put the crawfish tails in until step 8.

Eggplant Pontchartrain.

  • 1 medium eggplant
  • Salt
  • All-purpose flour
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 Tbs. milk
  • Italian seasoned bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 Tbs. butter
  • 1 tsp. chopped onion
  • 1/2 tsp. chopped garlic
  • 12 medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/2 bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/4 cup green onions, chopped
  • 1 Tbs. chopped pimiento
  • 1 tsp. chopped parsley
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 large mushrooms, sliced
  • Pinch cayenne
  • Pinch dried thyme
  • 2 Tbs. dry white wine
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup claw crabmeat

1. Slice the eggplant into rounds ½ inch thick. Coat them liberally with salt and arrange them around the inside of a colander. Fit a bowl snugly inside the colander and put about five pounds of something in the top bowl. Place this unit in the sink. After 30 minutes, remove the eggplant and wash all the salt off. This will remove the bitterness from the eggplant.

2. Slice the eggplant into rounds a half-inch thick. Dust the eggplant with flour.

3. Separate the egg and combine the yolk and milk in a broad bowl.

4. Pass the eggplant rounds through the egg-and-milk wash. Shake off the excess, then coat the eggplant with the seasoned bread crumbs.

5. Heat the oil in a skillet and fry the eggplant until golden brown on both sides. Remove and drain.

6. Heat the butter in a second skillet, and over medium heat saute the onions and garlic until transparent. Add the shrimp and cook until they turn pink.

7. Add the bell pepper, green onions, pimiento, parsley, bay leaf, mushrooms, cayenne, and thyme. Saute until tender.

8. Add the wine, salt and pepper, and crabmeat. Stir the sauce gently and spoon over hot fried eggplant rounds.

Serves four to six.

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