I love eggplant and when the opportunity to prepare a new recipe with them, I welcome it with open arms in my kitchen.
The small eggplant is cut in rounds and sautéed at with lots of garlic and ginger and of course, a concoction of sauces is used to make this eggplant recipe.
I do love Chinese food too, and since my first trip to China, when I have tasted the way the Chinese prepare their eggplant, it has been my mission to replicate it in my own kitchen.
This is my interpretation of the Chinese eggplant. The wonderful thing is that most Chinese sauces can be found in our grocery stores in bottles. Thus half a shelf has been taken by them in my refrigerator.
What is Eggplant?
Members of the nightshade family. Grown worldwide and most commonly purple in color. Also known as aubergine or brinjal, they all contain antioxidants like vitamins A and C.
At your grocery store, you will find a wide selection of eggplants. For this recipe, I used Chinese. You can also use Japanese eggplant, which is a little longer in size.
When selecting your eggplant make sure that not only they all are the same size but the skin is not bruised or has brown spots. It has to be firm to the touch and the skin has a shiny look to the naked eye.
Store them in a cool place and use in within two days if left outside of the refrigerator.
When purchasing your eggplant, I usually select a smaller one. The less internal pulp, the less they are bitter.
Some recipes will require cutting them and letting them rest with lots of salt sprinkled over them to remove the bitterness of it. Do follow that guide. The salt removes the acidity.
Cut all the pieces of eggplant the same size, easy to cook evenly
Either use a skillet or a wok, make sure they are hot so you can do a quick sear, and do not let them sit too long in the sauce.
This recipe cooks rather fast, I strongly suggest you have all the ingredients ready at once. If you are working over a gas stove, due to the shape of your wok, the flames have the tendency to come up along the side, please wear comfortable clothes around the heat source, and keep children away.
I love to work with a wok, and it mesmerizes me how fast everything cooks in it. Remember, if the heat is too hot and it cooks too fast, you can move whatever food you have inside, to the upper walls of your wok.
What other recipes can you prepare with eggplants?
I have an assortment of very easy recipes to a bit more elaborate.
Mix the soy sauce, oyster sauce, hoisin sauce, hot chili sauce, sugar, and water together in a small bowl. Set aside.
Slice eggplant crosswise around 1 ½ inch thick. Cut those pieces in half.
Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet or wok. Add the eggplant and sauté over high heat, covered for about 5 minutes, turning the pieces in the hot oil occasionally.
Remove the lid, add the ginger, garlic, scallions, and sauté uncovered for about 1 minute, tossing gently a few times.
Add the soy sauce mixture to the skillet, cover, and cook for about 1 minute. Uncover and cook for another minute. Add the parsley, toss and serve.