Something about this eggplants have been challenging me one time after the other. It seems to be a very simple vegetable to fix, but yet I keep trying to see how to cut down on the amount of oil I have been using to stir fry it. I tried this dish again because eggplant is delicious, and I love it. This recipe got my approval. I only used 3 Tablespoon of vegetable oil.
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1 large bulb eggplants
3 large cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp ginger, chopped finely
1 Cup large raw shrimps with tail or without - washed with salt and rinsed and strained.
4 fresh basil stalks = 1/2 C fresh basil leaves
1/3 C Cilantro, washed and chopped coarsely *Save about 5 leaf clusters for topping
1 tsp Srichara hot chili sauce
3 Tb low sodium soy sauce
Pinch of white pepper
3 Tb rice vinegar
1 Tb water
1 Tb sugar
1 Tb cornstarch
Slice the eggplants into halves, then another halves and then to quarters.
Then cut each spears diagonally about 3 inch long. Cut the spears by moving the knife alternately left and right, left and right diagonally until all eggplant spears are cut.
In a medium to large stock pot with lid, fill with enough water and bring to boil.
Get a large stainless steel mixing bowl with cold water to get ready for blanching.
Dunk all cut eggplants into the hot boiling water.
Cover with lid to bring the water to boiling again
Uncover, Stir around to make sure that each eggplant got their share of the hot bath.
Turn off heat. Quickly, use a straining ladle to transfer eggplants into the mixing bowl with cold water. Stir to make sure they are all cooled. Strain as much water as possible. 5-10 min. Set aside.
Stir Fry: *cornstarch ready by mixing it with 1Tbsp of water.
Over Medium high heat (I have gas stove) - pre-heat the wok. Add 2 Tbsp of oil into a pre-heated wok or pre-heated stainless steel frying pan or skillet.
*Make sure the frying pan is pre-heated before adding cooking oil.
Then, heat the oil for 30 sec.
* Drop a single piece of garlic and see if it would sizzle in the oil. Then, the oil is ready for cooking.
Add strained shrimps (somewhat dried, just make sure they are not dripping with water before adding to hot wok with hot oil). Add 1 tsp of chopped garlic. Stir fry for 40 sec or till the shrimps change color 90% from translucent to solid. Transfer the shrimp to a plate and set aside, but try to keep as much of the oil in the wok.
Return the wok over medium high heat. Add the remaining 1 Tbsp of oil.
Add egg plants. Stir to coat eggplants with oil.
Cover with lid and cook for 3 min.
Remove the lid and let the steam droplets drip back into the wok.
Check and see if the eggplants shows some 'browning'.
Flip each eggplant over to brown the other side. Cover. and cook for 3 min *but do not go far and listen to the sound in the wok.
Uncover to check. Add shrimps and all seasoning, except cornstarch slur.
Toss to mix all well. Cook 1-1/2 min. to bring liquid to boil.
Add the cornstarch slur. Toss lightly and frequently. You will notice the sauce starts to bubble around the edges of the wok first. Cook 1 more minute to make sure the sauce has thicken all around.
Remove from heat and transfer to a dish.
Serve hot with GENJIMAI (new specialty brown rice)