BOSTON (CBS) – If you’re not a fan of eggplant, and you think it tastes bitter, your problem may be which specimens you are bringing home.

Our fresh grocer, Tony Tantillo, shows you how to pick the right ones.

Watch the Fresh Grocer

The key to selecting a non-bitter eggplant is freshness. Therefore, look for an eggplant that is not too large that is lighter in weight. It will have fewer seeds that can cause bitterness. The flesh should spring back when pressed. All eggplant should be shiny and firm (but not rock hard) with a taut skin that is free of blemishes (such as wormholes or dark brown spots) or bruises. Heavy scarring is an indication of poor handling, but small scarring may just signal wind damage. A dull skin and rust-colored spots are a sign of age.

The color should reflect the specific variety. The stem, which should always be on the eggplant, should be bright green when it is appropriate to the variety. The inside of the eggplant should be white with few seeds and no green. Green indicates an immature eggplant.

Eggplant does not like severe cold, so the front part of the refrigerator where the temperature is around 46°F to 54°F is ideal for storage. Eggplant is ethylene sensitive, so store it away from ethylene-producing produce such as apples. If kept in a plastic bag (to retain moisture,) eggplants will last up to five days.

You can catch the Fresh Grocer every day at noon on WBZ-TV.


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