How to choose: An eggplant should feel heavy for its size and is tastiest at less than 1½ pounds. (Larger, older ones tend to be bitter.) Look for a smooth, shiny dark purple skin (a dull exterior indicates over-ripeness) and a green stem with leaves clinging to the top.
How to store: Refrigerate eggplant in a plastic bag up to 5 days; after that, it becomes bitter.
Best uses: Eggplant can be baked, sautéed, roasted, pan-fried, or broiled.