Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Asian Style Eggplant with Garlic Sauce




One of my favorite dishes for Chinese take out is Eggplant with Garlic sauce. I have been craving it lately so I decided I needed to make some. One problem. I was having trouble finding Chinese Eggplant in the grocery store. I kept looking and looking but no luck. One day Japanese Eggplant appeared at the grocery store and I was so excited....I could finally make Eggplant with Garlic Sauce! As I looked through the Japanese Eggplant my heart sank....it looked bad. It was bruised and old looking plus, it was $3.99 a pound. I decided I had enough. I bought regular globe eggplant at $1.99 a pound and decided to make it work.
The challenge with using regular eggplant versus Chinese or Japanese eggplant is that the skin on the globe eggplant is a tad thicker and the eggplant is a little more bitter. When making this recipe make sure that the eggplant is cooked throughly so the skin is not chewy but do not cook it so much that it turns to mush.
I was super happy with the results I felt like I was eating Eggplant with Garlic sauce from one of my favorite Chinese restaurants in Hoboken!
Enjoy!

Asian Style Eggplant with Garlic Sauce
Serves 3

Ingredients:
1 pound eggplant
3 tablespoons canola oil
2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar
3 garlic cloves, roughly diced
1 tablespoon ginger root, peeled and minced (I use Gourmet Garden Ginger Paste see link below)
1 teaspoon sriracha sauce (for mild, for medium heat add 2 teaspoons, for spicy add one tablespoon)
2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
2 teaspoons brown sugar
1/3 cup low sodium vegetable broth
2 teaspoons corn starch
2 tablespoons water
1 green onion, sliced
sesame oil

Preparation:
  1. Slice eggplant into 1/2 inch thick rounds. Cut rounds into quarters.
  2. Heat oil in wok over medium high heat. Cook and stir the eggplant about 6-8 minutes... Until eggplant and skin is soft.
  3. Remove eggplant from heat and toss in a medium bowl with rice wine vinegar. Set aside.
  4. Combine garlic, ginger, sriracha, soy sauce, brown sugar and vegetable broth. Heat the sauce in the wok over medium high heat. Bring the sauce to a boil, reduce heat and simmer. Cook sauce uncovered, for 5 minutes.
  5. Add the eggplant and vinegar mixture to the sauce.
  6. Gently fold the sauce over the eggplant.
  7. Combine the water and cornstarch together in a small bowl.
  8. After the eggplant is heated thoroughly add the cornstarch mixture and stir constantly until thickened. Cook an additional 2 minutes this helps to remove the cornstarch taste.
  9. Serve over rice.
  10. Garnish with sliced green onion and a drizzle of sesame oil.


Link for Ginger Paste:
http://na.gourmetgarden.com/us/products/ginger
This is not to be confused with Ginger Paste found in the Asian section of the grocery store. This is found usually in a cooler in the produce section.