About This Recipe:
Szechuan eggplant and pork is a hearty, spicy, and savory dish. It can be quite unhealthy when prepared at Chinese restaurants since the eggplant is fried in a lot of oil, so I definitely feel better eating this meal when I make it at home. However, I truly think that this recipe tastes like it was prepared at a restaurant, even though I am probably missing a few ingredients (like actual Szechuan peppercorns.) To make my life easier, I use a pre-made spicy bean sauce that contains soybeans, chili peppers, and Szechuan peppercorns. There are quite a few brands and varieties, so whatever you can find works. And make sure you have plenty of rice for all this slurpy goodness.
Ingredients (4 servings)
-1 lb Chinese or Japanese eggplants (about 2-3,) sliced into strips
-1 tbl cornstarch
-1/2 lb ground pork
-4 scallions, finely sliced (white halves and green halves separated)
-6 garlic cloves, minced
-1 tsp minced ginger
-1 tbl spicy bean sauce
-2 tbls soy sauce
-2 tbls rice wine vinegar
-2 tsps white sugar
-1/4 cup chicken stock
-1 tsp sesame oil
-Salt and pepper
Instructions (45 minutes)
1. In a large bowl, coat the sliced eggplants with the cornstarch. Then pour 2 tbls of vegetable oil into a large skillet over medium high heat, and cook the eggplant for about 4 minutes per side until softened. Transfer to a dish.
2. Add the ground pork and brown until fully cooked, breaking it up into small bits. Transfer to the dish with the cooked eggplant.
3. Cook the white parts of the scallions, the minced garlic, and the minced ginger for 2 minutes until fragrant.
4. Mix in the spicy bean sauce, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, and white sugar. Add the chicken stock and cooked eggplant and pork, and simmer for 5 minutes to thicken.
5. Drizzle the sesame oil on top and add the sliced green scallions.