Fall is the tastiest season of all. Farmers market shelves are piled high with the bounty of the harvest, including two comfort food favorites — exquisite eggplant and butternut squash. But if you’re like me, you may be perplexed about what to do with the produce once it is sitting on your kitchen counter. Not to worry. We turned to the connoisseur of culinary curiosities, Andrew Zimmern, host of the Travel Channel series Bizarre Foods America, for expert ideas on picking and prepping the versatile and nutritious fall vegetables.
“Choose firm, smooth eggplants,” says Zimmern. “If you push with your thumb and the flesh gives slightly then bounces back, it is ripe. If an indentation remains, it’s past its prime. Buy firm, blemish-free winter squash and store in a very cool, dark place; it will keep all winter.”