Eggplant comes in a range of shapes and colors. Globe eggplants are the largest and most common, and are often salted before cooking to reduce their bitterness and water content.
In Season: Though available year-round, eggplant peaks in the summer.
What to Look For: The flesh of an eggplant should give a bit when gently pressed; it should have no hard spots. The skin should be shiny, not shriveled, wrinkled, or mottled. Stems should be green. Avoid those with brown or soft spots.
How to Store: Whole eggplant will keep up to a few days in a cool place.