A sizzling hot plate of Szechuan eggplant is comfort food for me. Even though I grew up with Cantonese food, Szechuan cuisine has heavily influenced Chinese food here in Hong Kong.
In 2011, UNESCO named Chengdu, the capital city of the Sichuan province, a city of gastronomy due to the sophistication of their cooking methods and techniques. Another very interesting fact is that Buddhist vegetarian style cooking is derived from Szechuan cuisine. It is no wonder why so many Indians love this cuisine! It is extremely vegetarian friendly, and delightfully tasty.
The hot and spicy garlic sauce over crispy eggplant is a classic vegetarian Szechuan dish. I have recreated what I used to eat in some of the most traditional Szechuan Don’t forget to tag me or send me your recreations if you make this. I would love to share!
Serves 2 | 15mins |
- 2 long eggplants cut into 1″ strips
- 1/2 medium onion diced
- 3 cloves of minced garlic
- 1 tbsp of red red chilli sauce (Sriracha will do)
- 1/2 tsp of Sriracha chilli flakes
- 2 tbsp of organic soya sauce
- 1 tsp of regular white vinegar
- 1.5 tsp of cornflour or cornstarch
- 1 tsp of brown sugar (or jaggery)
- 1 small bunch of coriander leaves / cilantro
- 1 tsp of black pepper powder
- 2 tbsp of sesame oil
- 1 cup water
- Heat the sesame oil in a wide pan and when it starts to smoke, add the eggplant (in 2 batches if the pan isn’t big enough). Fry each side for 2-3 mins on medium to high heat until soft and brown.
- Add salt and pepper to the eggplant. Remove from the heat, and set aside.
- In the same pan, add a few more drops of sesame oil and fry the onions until soft.
- Add the red chilli sauce, flakes and minced garlic. Fry for a few seconds
- In a separate bowl, mix the soya sauce, vinegar, corn starch, sugar, and some salt in to make the Szechuan sauce. If this isn’t spicy enough, add more Sriracha chilli flakes, and 1 tsp of chilli bean paste.
- Pour the sauce in the pan and cook on medium-high heat until it starts to bubble
- Add the eggplant and mix well until the sauce covers the eggplant
- Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with white rice.
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