AUBERGINES IN SPICY PEANUT
WHAT YOU’LL NEED 1tbsp rapeseed oil, plus 1tsp 300g purple aubergine, sliced into 1cm x 3cm strips 1 red chilli, deseeded and finely sliced 1tbsp Shaohsing rice wine or dry sherry For the sauce: 1tsp smooth peanut butter 1tbsp chilli bean paste 1tsp sesame paste, such as tahini 2tbsp low-sodium light soy sauce 1tbsp Chinkiang black rice vinegar or balsamic vinegar 1tbsp cornflour 50ml cold water For the garnish and to serve: 1 spring onion, finely sliced 1tsp toasted sesame seeds Wheat flour noodles or steamed jasmine rice METHOD Whisk together all the ingredients for the sauce in a jug, then set aside.
Heat a wok over a high heat until smoking and add one tablespoon of rapeseed oil. Add the aubergine strips and stir-fry for four to five minutes while adding small drops of water to soften the aubergine — about 100ml in total. As the water evaporates, keep adding more.
Once softened, push the aubergines to one side of the wok and add the second teaspoon of rapeseed oil. Fry the sliced chilli for a few seconds, then season with the Shaohsing rice wine or dry sherry. Give the sauce a stir, then add to the wok and cook gently, stirring and tossing all the ingredients together until the sauce is heated through and has coated the aubergines — about two minutes. Garnish with the spring onion and toasted sesame seeds. Serve immediately with your choice of noodles or rice. SERVES 2