If you want to sound oh, so veddy British, ask for “aubergine” at the green grocers next time you want an eggplant. You might get a few questioning looks. However, if you ask a decorator for “aubergine” you will be shown fabric or paint samples in a beautiful dark, blackish purple the color of eggplant skin. I guess asking for “eggplant” paint is too ordinary.Fern, my neighbor, has a decorator’s eye. Her home is not only extremely well decorated, but also full of a variety of interesting items. Lots of antiques, many passed down through her family, are tucked away here and there providing a visual treat. Her sense of color is right on, as well. Her diningroom is a vivid cherry red, not too bright, definitely not too dull. It’s a perfect backdrop for the furnishings. A few years ago she painted a bathroom “aubergine” and had a devil of a time getting the color right. She started with a standard color from the paint chip closest to what she could see in her mind’s eye. Then she tinkered with it for a while, adding a little this and a little that, until it was close enough. After a couple of years, she decided it wasn’t “close enough” after all and redid the room in a new color altogether.I suppose most of you have had eggplant parmesan at one time. It is extremely good, when well prepared and a gloppy, greasy mess when not. I have had both. The best I ever ate was prepared by the director of the library where I work for a carry-in lunch celebrating the retirement of a staff member. It was perfect in every way. Not greasy, but rich and satisfying with a slightly spicy sauce that was just hot enough. I’ll have to beg him for the recipe. In the meantime, here is one from the Epicurious website.