Russian Eggplant Caviar and preservaties

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by mustaroad, Aug 8, 2011.

  1. mustaroad

    mustaroad

    Messages:
    80
    Likes Received:
    10
    Exp:
    Line Cook
    Hello cooks and food people.

    I have a question about a product that I found in a Russian Deli.

    It's called Russian eggplant caviar. The bottle reads: Eggplant, tomato concentrate, carrot, onion,  sunflower oil, sugar, salt, parsley, red pepper.

    My question is as follows. This stuff was on the shelf and not refrigerated and is not very salty or sweet... Is it as simple as it seems to make stuff like this or are their health concerns in making a preserve of similar ingredients and keeping it in the fridge for multiple weeks?

    I know there are methods which they might have taken including ultra high temp pasteurization and vacuum sealing in boiled glasses, but is there something unsaid? like in Russia do they not need to place preservative ingreedients on labels? (the bottle's label is written in russian although the name and ingreedients are also in english.

    I ask because I would like to make spreads similar to this and am wondering if something with similar ingredients would have a decent shelf-life in the refridgerator. (unpasteurized)

    Your thoughts would be much appreciated on this topic.
     
  2. boar_d_laze

    boar_d_laze

    Messages:
    8,550
    Likes Received:
    203
    Exp:
    Cook At Home
    It's got the same shelf life as any other cooked eggplant spread with a little acid, e.g., baba ganoush, and will keep in the refrigerator for at least 4 or 5 days before you can taste the onset of fermentation. 

    I'd be very careful about holding more than a day or two for sale. 

    Canning (bottling) low acid foods is its own thing and I'll refrain from giving any advice other than advising you to seek competent advice.

    Michael Symon does a nice version, and has  a recipe floating around from his "Melting Pot" days.  You can probably find it with teh Google.

    BDL 
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2011
  3. mustaroad

    mustaroad

    Messages:
    80
    Likes Received:
    10
    Exp:
    Line Cook
    Cool stuff. Ill look into low acid canning and Symon's info on Teh Google.
     
  4. chefedb

    chefedb

    Messages:
    5,516
    Likes Received:
    177
    Exp:
    Retired Chef
    Many years ago we made what was known as Poor Mans Caviar  useing eggplant,spices etc. We would make a sought of pie out of it placing it on a tray over chopped egg salad, then sprinkled with fresh parley on top and surrounded with crackers of some  kind. Or serve it on deviled eggs. As BDL states it is like Baba Ganoush and is made almost same way.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2011
  5. chrisbelgium

    chrisbelgium

    Messages:
    2,270
    Likes Received:
    206
    Exp:
    Home Cook
    Eggplant or aubergine caviar is still quite popular in french cuisine and very easy to make. It's an aubergine puree.

    Basically you slice eggplants lenghtwise, make cross patterns in the flesh with a knife, put some whole garlic cloves in it, sprinkle with olive oil, re-assemble the eggplants and roll in aluminiumsheet and bake in the oven for around 45-60 minutes at 180°C.

    Scrape the cooked flesh out of the aubergine peel. Now sweat a finely chopped shallot in some olive oil, add the aubergine puree and let it cook for a short while. Very tasty!
     
  6. ishbel

    ishbel

    Messages:
    3,147
    Likes Received:
    40
    Exp:
    Cook At Home
    I make it a lot, ChrisBelgium - sometimes I cook extra aubergines, wrapped in foil if we have a barbecue and use that for the dish we often call 'poor man's caviar' in the UK!  It has never lasted more than a day in our house, so I'm not sure about it's keeping properties, but then it's so quick and simple to make you would only need to make as much as you need at one time.