Today, you are a member of … Mad Apples

eggplant

Consider the eggplant, Members. This bulbous, brashly purple fruit (yes, fruit!) goes by many names: aubergine, brinjal, terong, melogene, and mad-apple. It’s a wonder we ever figured out we could eat it. Its plant is a member of the nightshade family, which is poisonous, and the folklore shrouding its cultivation usually involve people going insane.  But in fact, we conquered this ridiculous plant around the Middle Ages.  How do you think such a crazy, unpredictably colored, and dangerous entity was tamed? In the toolbox was definitely trial and error, the steady investigation of the sciences of agriculture and chemistry, and a bit of dogged “fuck you, I’m so hungry I’m gonna figure out how to eat this thing” persistence. So this week, if you are feeling like there’s a bunch of inedible mela insana being passed around, remember that domestication, though a long-ass process, can sometimes yield a fine staple for the tables you sit at.

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