Asian eggplants are milder and have a more delicate taste than Western varieties. The slender fruits vary in color from white with lavender streaks to a glossy purple-black. They need no peeling. The skins are thin and tender, adding a slight texture and sweet flavor to the flesh. In Japan, eggplants are often used in tempura, baked and served with a dipping sauce made of ginger and soy sauce, braised or pickled. They are more typically braised or fried in China, while in India, they are usually stuffed with meat and spices and baked. The mild flavor and porous flesh make them a perfect ingredient in a Thai curry dish, as they absorb the neighboring flavors. This is definitely a summer vegetable, unable to withstand cool weather.