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There's loads of great stuff out there to enhance your physical and spiritual health. Every two weeks, All Spirit Fitness brings you something we've found useful. Sometimes it's a brand new fitness tool, sometimes it's an everyday item that you can find at the store. Whatever it is, rest assured that if it's on this page, we think it's great!


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Eggplant is a multi-cultural vegetable. It's given an Italian flair in Eggplant Parmesan; in India you'll find it as the main ingredient in Baba Ghanoush; China has embraced eggplant for many centuries. In fact, back in the fifth century, stylish Chinese ladies would use eggplant skin to dye their teeth a shiny black hue. While this is not a recommended retro fashion, there are many delicious Asian recipes that feature eggplant. Eggplant's capabilities as a side or main dish definitely outweigh its cosmetic potential.

Eggplant is a low-calorie food, containing just 30 calories per cup. This may be surprising, considering some of the high-fat dishes containing eggplant. The key is to keep the fat down to a reasonable level (on its own, eggplant has just a smidgen of fat). For grilling, spray the eggplant slices lightly with olive oil. Bake it and mash it up with a tomato, an onion, some garlic, lemon juice, salt and pepper, and a tablespoon or less of oil to make eggplant "caviar." Cook it in a hearty vegetable stew. Don't insult eggplant by deep-frying it and it will reward you with fiber, potassium and vitamins A and C - all for a minimum amount of calories.

When shopping for eggplant, look for those that have a glossy, purple skin with no bruises. Your eggplant should be firm and feel light for its size. When storing, keep it away from apples and other ethylene-producing foods. It's best used within a day or two of purchase. It can be refrigerated for up to five days, but keep it in the warmest part of the refrigerator.

Looking for a book of eggplant recipes? Try Essentially Eggplant by Nina Kehayan.

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