Adapted from: https://biancazapatka.com/en/chinese-eggplants-with-chili-garlic-sauce/
- 2 small or 1 large eggplant
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 Tbsp cornstarch (or other starch)
For the sauce
- 1.5 Tbsp soy sauce or tamari
- 1 Tbsp rice vinegar
- 1-2 Tbsp water
- 1 tsp cornstarch
- 2 tsp sugar (or maple syrup)
- 2.5 Tbsp peanut or other high-heat oil
- 1 tsp fresh ginger, minced (or 1/4 tsp dried)
- 3 small or 1 large clove garlic, minced
- 1-2 hot peppers, minced (leave seeds in for spicy; remove for milder flavour)
For serving (optional)
- 2 green onions, sliced
- steamed rice or fresh bread
- sesame seeds
- Wash eggplants & cut into small chunks (leave skin on). Transfer to a large bowl, add salt, and stir to combine. Soak for 15 mins – 1 hour.
- Pat eggplant pieces dry (rinse first if you want the dish to be less salty), sprinkle with 1 Tbsp starch, and mix well to coat.
- Mix all of the sauce ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.
- Heat 2 Tbsp oil in a large pan or wok over medium heat. Add the eggplant pieces and fry for about 5-8 minutes, or until skin is lightly browned and the inside is soft. Remove the pieces and transfer to a plate while you make the sauce.
- In the same pan, add the remaining oil (1/2 Tbsp or so), ginger, garlic, and hot peppers. Roast for a few seconds while stirring, just until fragrant. Add the eggplant pieces back in.
- Whisk up the bowl of sauce until the starch is completely dissolved, then pour it over the eggplant pieces in the pan. Stir immediately until the eggplant is evenly coated and the sauce is slightly thickened. Remove from heat.
- Serve as a side dish garnished with green onions, or with bread or over rice as a main dish, with lime wedges on the side.