A mother-daughter conversation on food and cooking (mostly)

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Eggplant, Marital Accord, and the Microwave

Wow--that's a lot of topic to cover in one post.

When I cook eggplant I love to leave the skin on because it's a beautiful color and provides texture. Dad finds it indigestible, so I peel off half or more, and proceed with my dish.

And then--I prep the eggplant for this dish in the microwave. I learned this from reading a Barbara Kafka microwave cookbook at least twenty years ago. I rarely do anything with the microwave except thawing and reheating, but this step really keeps the eggplant from soaking up a ton of oil.

Szechuan Eggplant

1 large eggplant
1 tablespoon vegetable oil

Peel eggplant and cut in 1/2" x 3" strips. Toss with oil. Microwave, covered, for about 8-10 minutes, stirring every few minutes.
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon minced ginger
1 tablespoon vegetable oil

Heat oil in a skillet and stir-fry garlic and ginger for a couple of minutes.

1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon hot bean sauce
1 teaspoon hoisin sauce
1 tablespoon white vinegar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup water

Mix and add to skillet. Bring to boil and stir until thickened. Add eggplant and cook 2 minutes.

Green onion slices
Sesame oil

Garnish with green onion or cilantro. Sprinkle with a little sesame oil.


Eva said...

Oh, good! I've been meaning to ask you for this recipe for years now.

I almost never use the microwave, either, but we learned from Lawson's dad just a few weeks ago that you can microwave sweet corn in its husk and it's actually better than if you shuck it and boil it. It retains more corn flavor, and it's super easy. I am a complete convert.

Kris said...

How about writing a post on this--cooking times, do you remove the silk, etc?

Russell said...

We don't have a microwave, but even if we did I'd use my current method of pre-cooking eggplant: broil in the toaster oven.