Total Time
40mins
Prep 25 mins
Cook 15 mins

Insipid eggplant dishes are now a thing of the past! It doesn't look very pretty but the taste more than makes up for it. The most important flavoring ingredient is the chili bean paste so choose a good one that is made with fermented fava beans or a combination with fermented soy beans. The dried shrimp add a lot of flavor but feel free to omit it for a vegetarian version. We made so much that my timing is a guesstimate, please be kind with me!! :)

Ingredients Nutrition

Directions

  1. Soak the dried shrimp in a few tablespoons of hot water for about 5 minutes; drain, rinse, then mince the shrimp.
  2. Cut the eggplant into chunks on the bias.
  3. Cut at an angle, then rotate the eggplant a half turn, then cut on the bias again, repeat.
  4. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a wok or large skillet over medium high heat.
  5. Add the chopped zha cai and minced dried shrimp, cook for a minute or two in the hot oil.
  6. Add the chili paste, green onions, minced ginger, and minced garlic and cook until the mixture is fragrant, about 1 minute.
  7. Add the eggplant and stir to coat the pieces in the chili mixture, cook for a minute.
  8. Add the soy sauce, sugar, white pepper, and about a 1/4 cup of water.
  9. Cover and steam until eggplant are tender but not mushy.
  10. Stir occasionally, don't be too rough or you'll smash the eggplant.
  11. Season to taste with more soy sauce or salt.
  12. Garnish with sliced green onions (green part only; serve with brown or white rice.