Plants grow similarly to sweet peppers and fruit abundantly throughout the summer, preferably under glass or in a sunny spot outdoors. Aubergine Melanzana Prosperosa produces flattened round, paler purple fruits with firm, bitter-free flesh.
Sow seeds under heated glass, 6mm deep, at a minimum temperature of 15C during January to March in pots of good compost.
Transplant to larger pots during April or May when seedlings can be easily handled. Plant out once frost risk has passed, either under protection or outdoors in warmer areas. Soil should be well prepared before transplanting with a liberal application of well-rotted manure or compost. Plant outdoors 70cm apart each way, or in large pots or containers under protection.
Water and feed generously after planting out and as necessary throughout the period of cropping.
To help support the plants, soil can be pulled from between the rows to the base of the plants and made firm, or support with a stout cane. Side-shooting or 'stopping' is not necessary.
Fruits should be consumed as soon as possible.
Aubergines are a good source of viscous fibre which has been shown to reduce the absorption of cholesterol. They contain Vitamins E & K and are high in potassium, folate and magnesium.
Italian style eggplant. Sauté sliced onions, cubed eggplant, and sliced bell peppers in butter. Add diced tomatoes and oregano and simmer. Serve with parmesan topping.