The first time you cut into a Japanese eggplant, there may be confusion because they look different from a typical American eggplant. So if you want to make a Japanese eggplant recipe, I am here to help you know what is what.
It surprised me that there is a difference between a regular eggplant and a Japanese eggplant.
When I cut open a Japanese eggplant, the seeds took me off guard. First, they were tiny, and then the color threw me for a loop.
If you can relate, let’s dive in.
To quickly cover a few important things to know. A Japanese eggplant is different than a typical American eggplant.
The most significant difference between the Japanese eggplant and the typical American eggplant is its shape and size. The Japanese eggplant is longer and more narrow. It also has a thinner skin. Also, it is sweeter and a bit milder in flavor in comparison.
Also, as an interesting aside, another name for the Japanese eggplant is nasu. So you may see that label at the grocery store.
Does Japanese eggplant have seeds?
Yes, Japanese eggplants do have seeds, and they are edible. The seeds in Japanese eggplants are tiny compared to those in an American eggplant.
Japanese eggplants have fewer seeds than other types of eggplants, and the seeds that they do have are small and soft. They are also not very bitter, so they do not add any unpleasant flavor to the eggplant.
The seeds are found in the center of the fruit and are dark in color. The color of the seed can be off-putting if it is your first time to cut open a Japanese eggplant. Don’t be intimidated because you will barely notice they are there.
Yes, you will see them but don’t feel you should remove them before cooking.
Sometimes you will cut into a Japanese eggplant and not even see the seeds. This is why there is a bit of confusion around the question of Japanese eggplants and seeds. Sometimes the seeds are so tiny that you don’t even notice them.
About the color of Japanese eggplant seeds
Japanese eggplant seeds have a dark color about them. Yes, this can be odd to see at first, especially against such cream-colored flesh. Don’t be worried about the color. It doesn’t mean that the eggplant is bad or that the seeds are bad.
Once you cook the eggplant, the color will barely be noticeable; after cooking, the seeds may be invisible in the dish.
The important thing is to know that dark color seeds in a Japanese eggplant are normal.
About the taste and texture of Japanese eggplant seeds
The seeds taste pretty mild and a bit sweet. Sometimes they will have a very slight bittersweet taste to them. They are not nearly as robust in flavor as the seeds of a typical American eggplant.
The texture isn’t crunchy, but it also isn’t mushy. I would describe it as a bit spongy. They are also soft and tender, so the texture will barely be noticeable.
The bottom line
Ultimately, you don’t need to remove the seeds from the Japanese eggplant because of taste or texture. The seeds are so mild that they shouldn’t disturb the taste or texture of your dish.