Wear This, Make That: Crispy Eggplant Tacos with Quick-Pickled Radishes

If you haven’t noticed, our ModCloth label is all about the punchy produce this month! The beautiful bounty of fruits and veggies has always inspired art and fashion, from classic still lifes to Carmen Miranda absolutely rocking that fruit-filled headdress. Since produce is clearly a fashion muse, we thought it’d be fun to turn the tables and let a dress inspire a dish!

We took our ingredient list from the It’s an Inspired Taste’ dress, a ModCloth exclusive available in a full size range and sure to be the star of many a spring party. With its lush print of avocados, eggplants, tomatoes and more, the dress offered so many ingredient choices, we gave ourselves the challenge of packing as many of them into one dish as possible. And while we couldn’t quite figure out how to include peas and carrots, we got pretty close with our Crispy Eggplant Tacos with Quick-Pickled Radishes.

Find the recipe below, and be sure to browse our ModCloth label… you never know what kind of culinary adventure it might inspire!

Crispy Eggplant Tacos with Quick-Pickled Radishes
Yield: Approx. 8 tacos

2 medium-sized eggplants
1/2 cup flour
2 eggs
1 cup bread crumbs (we made our own from fresh bread, but panko works great here!)
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground chili powder
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Fresh ground black pepper (about three turns of your pepper mill)
8 tortillas (we used wheat tortillas, but corn would be delicious too)

1 avocado, sliced
6 cherry tomatoes, chopped in quarters
1 recipe quick-pickled radishes (Cookie + Kate has our favorite)
1 jalapeño or other medium-heat pepper, cored, de-seeded and finely chopped (optional)
Your favorite salsa or hot sauce
Crumbled cotija cheese
Lime wedges

1) Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly drizzle a flat baking sheet with olive oil.
2) Slice eggplant into 3 inch long, 1/4-inch thick sticks. Place the eggs in a small bowl and beat until smooth. Place the flour in a second small bowl. In a third bowl, combine bread crumbs, cumin, chili powder, cinnamon, black pepper and salt.
3) Dredge the eggplant in the flour, shaking off any excess. Dip the eggplant into the beaten egg, then roll in the bread crumb mixture until covered. The breaded eggplant will be pretty crumbly, so handle carefully.

4) Place the breaded eggplant on the baking sheet and bake 15-20 minutes until the breading is crispy and eggplant is tender.
5) Meanwhile, prepare your fillings. Slice the avocado into thin lengthwise slices, and chop the cherry tomatoes into halves or quarters, depending on their size. Finely chop the cilantro and jalapeño, crumble the cotija cheese, and shake off any excess pickling liquid from your radishes. Tacos are all about customization, so consider putting the toppings in separate serving bowls and let everyone heap on their favorite fillings at the table.
6) Divide the eggplant between the tortillas; top with avocado, tomatoes, radishes, your favorite salsa or hot sauce, cilantro, jalapeño, and cotija cheese. Add a squeeze of lime juice over everything, and enjoy!

+What dish does the It’s an Inspired Taste Dress make you crave? Let us know in the comments!

About Sarah

Sarah is a writer, baker, and all-around trouble maker based in Pittsburgh PA. When she’s not tweeting and pinning for ModCloth’s social team, you can find her thrifting for vintage leather jackets, reading 'Jane Eyre' for the eighth time, or gratuitously ‘gramming her cat Pepper.

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