How to make baked eggplant with chilli bean paste
Call us blunt but an eggplant is only as good as its seasoning. Believe it or not, we've had our fair share of medicore examples that just didn't make the cut. Tried and tested, this tangy yet spicy creation, which features a Sichuan speciality sauce (termed as yuxiang) from chef de cuisine Eugene See from Birds of a Feather have made the once-humble aubergine, humble no more. Explosive sounds more like it. Recreate this Sichuan-inspired dish with the recipe below.
Note: Make the yuxiang sauce before starting on the baked eggplant
Yuxiang sauce: Here's what you need
1 tspn Chopped White Pickled Ginger
140g Chopped Pickled Red Chilli
2 cloves of Garlic, minced
20g Ginger, minced
1pc Japanese Leek, minced
2 tspn Light Soya Suace
1 tspn Dark Soya Sauce
1 tspn Chinese Black Vinegar (Chef recommends Baoling vinegar)
100ml Red Chilli Oil
2 tspn Chilli Bean Paste (Dou ban jiang)
Yuxiang sauce: How to make it
1. Sauté minced garlic, minced ginger and minced Japanese leek until soft.
2. Add in the pickled ginger, pickled red chilli and bean paste. Continue to sauté.
3. Add in sugar, light soya sauce and dark soya sauce. Bring to a boil and let it simmer for two minutes.
4. Add in black vinegar, then red oil. Set aside for eggplant.
Baked eggplant in yuxiang sauce: Here's what you need
1 Japanese Eggplant
1 tbspn Chopped Spring Onion
1 tbspn Chopped Coriander Leaf
Baked eggplant: Here's how to make it
1. Preheat oven 180°C. Slice eggplant, with skin on.
2. Fry the eggplant at 160°C for three minutes. Remove and pat dry.
3. In a new pan, bring the yuxiang sauce to a boil and add the fried eggplant. Braise the eggplant in the sauce for another three minutes
4. Add corn starch to thicken the sauce. Remove the eggplant from the pan to a tray and add shredded buffalo mozzarella cheese on top. Bake in oven for three minutes.
5. Spoon some of the leftover yuxiang sauce over the eggplant. Garnish with chopped coriander and spring onions before serving.