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Asian eggplant in a spicy garlic sauce makes a wonderful vegetable side dish. I love the small, slender Japanese eggplants as they are tender and don't have the bitterness of regular eggplant. Recipe is from my "James McNair's Favorites" cookbook.
- 2 lbs Japanese eggplants
- 1⁄2 cup soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar, unseasoned
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 teaspoons Asian chili sauce
- 1⁄4 cup canola oil
- 1⁄4 cup garlic, chopped
- 1⁄2 cup green onion, sliced (including tops)
- chives (to garnish, snipped)
- slivered green onion top (to garnish)
- Cut ends from eggplants and cut crosswise into slices about 1/2 inch thick. then cut slices into half circles and set aside.
- In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, sugar, vinegar, cornstarch, and chile with 1/2 cup water and stir to mix well; set aside.
- Place a wok, large saute pan, or large, heavy skillet over high heat. When the pan is hot, add the oil and swirl to coat the pan. When the oil is hot but not yet smoking, add the eggplant and garlic, quickly toss to coat with oil, and stir-fry, moving the pan off and on the heat as necessary to prevent scorching, until the eggplant is very tender but not falling apart, about 5 minutes. Stir the reserved soy sauce mixture to recombine, then stir it into the eggplant. Add the sliced green onions and stir until the sauce thickens, about 30 seconds.
- Transfer to a serving platter or bowl, sprinkle with chives or green onion tops and serve warm.
This is a very delicious dish. I did cut down the soy sauce significantly made about half the recipe, and did not use more than a tbl or so of soy sauce, but that did not detract from the dish at all. I did reduce the cornstarch and added a bit of water, to compensate. I can see using this sauce on other things.