I have a serious love for fried eggplant. Have you ever tried it? It’s served in a lot of places around town, I think because it’s a great combination of Italian-American and deep-south goodness in a land where people love their vegetables, but especially if they’re fried. Parran’s is a good place for lunch if you happen to find yourself in Metairie getting your car worked on, or running other errands or some sort of workday drudgery: they’ve got a huge selection of Italian-inspired po-boys, pastas, and all sorts of fried goodies, like eggplant and cauliflower. Parran’s eggplant is cut into flat sticks, dredged in breadcrumbs like eggplant Parmesan would be, and served up with a classic marinara. Good stuff. In fact, I’d have to say this type of fried eggplant, which is the most common type, is one of my favorite snackers to order at a restaurant. They taste soft and sweet, and as good as they look:
But hold on just a minute, because recently we were treated to a whole new kind of fried eggplant, a sort of eggplant batter-dipped french fry, or FUNNEL CAKE of eggplant, or something else I haven’t thought of yet to call it but that sounds similarly angelic. This eggplant came from Liuzza’s by the Track–another great place for lunch, in our very own ‘hood. Liuzza’s is famous for their BBQ shrimp po-boy and their “breathtaking beef” (shot through with horseradish), but they’ve got great fried seafood and their specials always tempt me away from the regular menu items. This eggplant was a special, but let’s convince them to keep it on. We devoured–inhaled is more like it–this platter in about 3 minutes, because the eggplant was so light and melty it was like eating eggplant dreams! Also, you can get a HALF softshell crab po-boy there with a cup of soup, something I am all about.
GUH! I want it again.
garlic oyster po-boy (fried oysters drizzled with garlic butter) and gumbo
my softshell crab po-boy and tomato bisque, another special that was darn good.
The fried eggplant is good at either place, but I love the variety of Liuzza’s, plus their surprising specials. It’s a win-win kind of place.