The sweet garlic, tender chicken, and wok-seared eggplant mingle fragrantly with a ginger-soy sauce enhanced with Asian basil leaves to create a delicious and easy meal you won’t soon forget.
Serve this quick-to-assemble meal over rice. We love it over a curried rice and have included a recipe below.
Asian basil leaves can be found in an Asian market or in the produce section of larger markets. If you can’t find Asian or Thai basil, substitute with an Italian or regular basil.
And if your market doesn’t carry serrano chiles, substitute with a jalapeno instead. I love to buy red serrano chiles, the color indicates they’re at the peak of freshness, the spice intensity has mellowed, leaving an almost sweet taste.
Chinese Spicy Chicken Garlic Eggplant
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
4 medium Japanese eggplants, sliced 2″ thick
Salt to taste
3 large garlic cloves, minced
2 serrano chiles, stemmed and minced
1 tablespoon minced ginger
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken tenders,
1/4 cup scallions, sliced
2 tablespoons Asian basil leaves, torn
Stir soy sauce, vinegar, rice wine, sugar, and salt in a bowl; set sauce aside.
Salt the eggplant generously and leave in a colander to sweat for 15 to 30 minutes, while you prepare the remaining ingredients. Rinse and drain on a clean kitchen towel.
Heat a large, heavy skillet or wok over high heat. Add 1 tablespoon oil, turn the heat down to medium-high, and add the garlic, chiles and minced ginger. Stir-fry for 30 seconds, and add the chicken. Stir-fry until the chicken is cooked through and no traces of pink remain. Transfer from the pan or wok to a bowl.
Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the pan. Add the eggplant. Cook, stirring, until the eggplant is lightly browned and almost cooked through, about 10 minutes. Stir the chicken back into the pan, and add the soy-ginger. Add 1/4 cup water, cover the wok or pan, turn the heat down to medium and steam for five minutes. Uncover, and stir in the scallions and basil. Stir for 30 seconds to a minute, remove from the heat and serve with rice.
1/2 small onion, diced small
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 teaspoons curry powder
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 cups long grain rice
4 cups water
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
Heat the oil in a heavy, large saucepan over medium-low. Add onion and garlic to the oil, saute until softened. Next, add the curry powder and rice to the saucepan, continue to saute and stir for about a minute.
Add water and salt. Bring to a boil uncovered until the surface of the rice is covered with steam holes and the grains on top appear dry, about 8 minutes.
Reduce heat to low and cover, cooking another 15 minutes. Remove pan from heat and let stand, covered, 5 minutes and then fluff with a fork.