|Salt||To Taste (For Sprinkling)|
|Vegetable oil||1⁄3 Cup (5.33 tbs)|
|White vinegar||2 Teaspoon|
|Liquid hickory smoke concentrate||1⁄2 Teaspoon|
|Natural red food color||8 Drop (Natural)|
|Yellow food color||2 Drop (Natural)|
Peel eggplant and slice into 3 x 1 1/4 x 1/4 -inch strips. Place eggplant on a rimmed platter and sprinkle lightly with salt. Cover with a paper towel or clean cloth. Press with a weight (such as a pot filled with water) for several hours or overnight. Drain.
In a skillet, saute eggplant In the vegetable oil over low heat without allowing strips to brown. Eggplant should become soft but not mushy. Set aside.
In a small bowl, combine vinegar, hickory smoke concentrate, water, sugar, salt to taste and food color. Stir this mixture into eggplant, tossing strips to coat evenly. Return to stove and cook for 2 minutes. Drain strips well on paper towels and let cool.
Serve on split bagels with cream cheese. Also good on small party rye or pumpernickel bread with cream cheese and chopped onion.