A very simple and easy recipe for a lovely snack on its own, with rice or part of a larger Thai meal. Ottolenghi has published a Japanese recipe that is nearly identical (see Ottolenhi’s version) some years after this one post appeared. It shows how wide spread dishes can be over Asia, retaining similar characteristics with regional variations.
You might also like to cook Kerala Eggplant in Coconut, Saffron and Rosewater Scented Eggplant, Eggplants, Sultanas and Pinenuts, or Steamed Thai Eggplants and Zucchini. Browse all of our Eggplant Recipes here and here, and all of our Asian recipes here and here.
Steamed Eggplant in Sesame-Soy Sauce
Prep time: 5 mins
Cooking time: 15 mins
Serves: 2 – 4 people, depending how you use it
2 long eggplants
2 Tblspn Chinese light soy sauce
1 Tspn toasted sesame oil
1 tspn rice vinegar
0.5 tspn ground dried red chillies, or chop a fresh red chilli very finely
1 tspn grated fresh ginger
0.5 clove garlic, chopped very finely
1 tspn sugar
0.5 tspn toasted white sesame seeds
Trim off the stem end of the eggplants. Cut them crosswise into pieces about 3 – 4cm in length.
Place the eggplant slices onto a steamer rack and steam over medium-high heat for 6-10 minutes, or until they are cooked to the tenderness of your liking. Don’t leave too long, as they will become very mushy, but do make sure that they are cooked through.
While the eggplants are steaming, make the sauce by combining soy sauce, sesame oil, vinegar, ground dried chillies, garlic, ginger and sugar. Stir well to blend flavours.
Remove the eggplants from the steamer and slice each piece in half lengthwise and each half again into 2-3 long strips. Arrange the pieces in a single layer on a serving plate. Spoon the sesame-soy sauce evenly over the eggplant pieces, sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds. You can also garnish with green coriander/cilantro.
Good served warm, cold or at room temperature.
If you only have the larger, egg shaped eggplant, slice in two lengthwise, and proceed as above.
I have made it without the garlic and it is still wonderful.