Creole Eggplant Soup

Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Easy

  • Makes

    6

    servings

Appears in

The Glory of Southern Cooking

The Glory of Southern Cooking

By James Villas

Published 2007

  • About

Introduced to the American colonies from Africa by Thomas Jefferson, eggplant is often referred to as Guinea squash in Louisiana, where the vegetable has always been much more popular than in other areas of the South—due, most likely, to the large black population there. Except, in fact, for a splendid eggplant soup that chef Bill Neal used to prepare at Crook’s Corner in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, I don’t recall ever eating one outside New Orleans and the Louisiana Delta. In any case, this is another of the South’s great curried dishes, appropriate for a cold winter’s night or, chilled and skimmed of any surface fat, at a summer luncheon.

Ingredients

  • 6 tablespoons bacon grease
  • 2 cups diced eggplant
  • 1 cup diced onions
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • 1 cup diced potatoes
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • ½ teaspoon curry powder
  • Pinch of crumbled dried thyme
  • Pinch of crumbled dried basil
  • cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup heavy cream

Method

In a large, heavy skillet, heat the bacon grease over moderate heat, add the eggplant, onions, celery, potatoes, and garlic, and cook, stirring, about 10 minutes. Add the curry powder, thyme, and basil and continue cooking till the potatoes start to stick to the bottom of the skillet. Add the broth, stir, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer till the starch from the eggplant and potatoes thickens the liquid, about 30 minutes. When the soup is thickened, stir in the heavy cream, heat well, and serve in soup bowls.