Friday, October 16, 2009

Eggplant, Without Parmesan

I love Eggplant Parmesan. Really, I do. It's tasty and filling and it freezes well. But when I have the eggplant, but not the time, I opt for stir-fry. I've been making variations of this for the last couple of weeks.

Eggplant Stir-Fry

(All amounts are approximate. I've marked a few ingredients as "optional," but consider them all optional. Adjust or substitute ingredients for your taste. )

Canola oil
1-inch knob of ginger, peeled and sliced into matchsticks
2-3 scallions, sliced, or 1 onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 Thai chili, seeds removed, sliced
2 small bell peppers, chopped
4-5 ounces mushrooms, sliced
1 or more eggplant (depending on size), cubed with peel on
1 pound thinly sliced beef or chicken, or fish or tofu (optional)
1/4 cup dry sherry
3 Tbsp soy sauce
Sesame oil (optional)
Sesame seeds (optional)

Heat a small amount of canola oil in a deep-sided skillet, and stir-fry the ginger, scallion/onion, garlic, chili pepper, bell pepper, and mushrooms until tender-crisp. Remove from skillet and heat a little more oil if necessary. Add the eggplant and let it cook undisturbed for about 3 minutes. It should brown a bit on the bottom but release from the bottom of the skillet. Stir the eggplant around and let it cook, now stirring occasionally, another 3 minutes or so, until it softens.

If you are adding a protein, remove the eggplant and stir fry the beef/chicken/etc. separately. Then continue by returning the vegetables to the skillet, along with the sherry and soy sauce. Add a touch of sesame oil if desired and garnish with sesame seeds.

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