Spicy Eggplant and Broccoli in Ginger Sauce

Eggplant and broccoli stir-fry featuring red bell pepper and fresh Thai basil. Eggplant slices, broccoli florets, red bell pepper, onion, and fresh Thai basil stir-fried with garlic, chili and ginger. The hot tossed vegetables in spicy garlic sauce go well over steamed Chinese long-grain white rice.

The Eggplant slices are soaked in salt water to prevent discoloration and remove any bitterness from the eggplant flesh. The process of salting or soaking eggplant briefly is common in recipes and the step is worth the effort. Once eggplant is salted, and drained, it can be handle being left at room temperature for more water to evaporate.

The popular Japanese eggplant can be found in supermarkets, farmers markets and specialty produce stores. The larger American style purple eggplant work just fine when stir-fried, and are a suitable substitution. Smaller eggplant have fewer seeds and are less bitter, so if Japanese eggplant cannot be procured, purchase several small American eggplant.

Spicy Eggplant and Broccoli in Ginger Sauce


2 pounds Japanese Eggplant, preferably the small dark purple variety 3 tablespoons Vegetable or Canola Oil 1 tablespoon minced Fresh Garlic 1 teaspoon Ground Chili Paste 2 tablespoons minced Fresh Ginger 1/2 small Yellow or White Onion, cut into thin wedges 3 cups Broccoli Florets, cut into bite-size pieces, blanched, and shocked in ice water 2 tablespoons Soy Sauce 2 tablespoons Vegetarian Oyster Sauce or Mushroom Sauce 1/2 cup Cold Water 1/2 Red Bell Pepper, julienned 1/4 cup Fresh Thai Basil Leaves, halved 6 Fresh Cilantro Sprigs, for garnish

1. Mix the water with cornstarch in a small bowl. Set aside. 2. Slice the eggplant in half lengthwise. Slice eggplant halves into approximately ¾" slices. 3. Soak the eggplant in salt water to prevent discoloration. 4. Remove the slices from water. Pat the eggplant dry or lay on paper towels to remove excess moisture. 5. Heat the vegetable oil in the wok over medium heat. Add the garlic, ground chili paste, and fresh ginger to wok. Stir-fry for 20 seconds. 6. Add the eggplant to the wok. Stir-fry for 4 minutes. Add the onion wedges, broccoli florets, soy sauce, and oyster sauce, reduce heat and stir-fry 3-4 minutes. 7. Stir cornstarch mixture to recombine. Stir in 1 tablespoon of the cornstarch mixture at a time to thicken sauce. Continue stirring and adding cornstarch mixture until sauce coats back of spoon nicely. 8. Stir in the red bell pepper and the fresh Thai basil leaves. Remove from heat. 9. Transfer to serving dish. 10. Garnish with fresh cilantro.

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