Eggplants are the humble Asian counterpart of aubergines. It is long and light purple on the outside but the inside looks the same as an aubergine. Eggplants are sweeter with no hint of bitterness at all. Aubergines are more available here in the UK and we use it as a substitute for eggplant.
I love both aubergines and eggplants and have made this fusion dish using aubergines and basil but cooking it with an Asian style and flavour. The basil leaves perk up the sweet, salty and spicy flavour of the stir-fried pork sauce. Together with the grilled aubergines, it packs a punch when eaten with rice. It is very easy and doesn't take long to cook. Make sure to make extra servings of rice.
1 big aubergine, sliced lengthwise
3 cloves of garlic, chopped
1/2 red finger chilli, sliced diagonally
200 gms. (about 1 cup) minced pork
1/2 c. roughly torn basil leaves
1/2 c. water
1/2 tsp. corn flour
1 tbsp. fish sauce
1 tbsp. brown sugar
2 stalks of spring onions, cut into rounds
olive oil for brushing on aubergine
2 tbsps. cooking oil for stir frying
Brush the aubergine liberally with olive oil and grill on a pre-heated grill for about 10 minutes on each side or when the inside is cooked and the surface nicely browned. Set aside. Heat up a wok and add the cooking oil. Stir fry the chopped garlic and chilli for a few seconds. Do not let the garlic brown. Add the minced pork, brown sugar and fish sauce until the mixture is dry and golden in color. Add the spring onions. Disperse the corn flour in the water. Add to the pork mixture while stirring constantly until the sauce thickens. Stir in the basil. Pour over the grilled aubergines and serve.
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