The Indian eggplant is a delicate, tropical perennial often cultivated as a tender or half-hardy annual in temperate climates. Indian eggplants are small dark reddish-purple in color and can range from thumbnail to hen's egg-sized. The egg-shaped glossy purple fruit has white flesh with a meaty texture. The cut surface of the flesh rapidly turns brown when the fruit is cut open. Eggplants are bitter when raw, but develop a savory and complex flavor when cooked. The texture of the flesh is meaty and it absorbs sauces and cooking liquids very easily.