A tasty Cuban dish from Chicago chef Randy Zweiban.
Game plan: Chef Zweiban prefers slender Chinese eggplant with pale purple skin because it doesn’t need to be peeled and doesn’t have a bitter flavor, but you can substitute regular eggplant. For regular eggplant, salt the pieces, set them in a colander to drain, and place a weight on them (a small bowl works) for 15 minutes to 1 hour. Pat them dry with paper towels before using.
Beverage pairing: Boutari Moschofilero, Greece. This ratatouillelike dish could go with almost any wine from light red to rosé to white. The latter choice, however, is the most exciting, as the bright pick-me-up of this Greek white wine contrasts with the richness of the eggplant, and its beguiling perfume of white flowers and citrus zest lifts the whole ensemble.
It's Halloween party season, which means candy corn, punch bowls with floating eyeballs, lots of pumpkins...