June 6, 2012
Stuffed Eggplant Yum Cha
I know I've mentioned how much we love Yummy Cha
As well as enjoying it out and about, I've been slowly building up my own set of gluten and dairy free dishes for when we can't be bothered going out.
Sometimes you just get a hankering for that one dish, and it's nice to be able to whip it up or pull it out of the freezer ready to go when you are.
This is another one of my favourite Yum Cha dishes, Stuffed Eggplant, it's also pretty much the same as Stuffed Tofu, so I count them as the one dish really. The eggplant is so silky, stuffed with a soft delicious filling and then covered with a thin crispy shell of crunch to finish off the sublime taste and texture sensation, and the tofu is the same, just a bit bouncier when bitten into which is just as nice as well.
I'm not going to actually give 'real' measurements for the recipe today though Dear Readers, as it really depends on the size of your eggplant/tofu that is the carrier for this dish.
My filling ingredients for today were some nice pork rashers, shiitake mushrooms and spring onions
I started by finely chopping some nice pork rashers. I wanted some fat to keep the filling moist and I didn't want it cut too fine as I also wanted some nice texture to chew on as a contrast to the silkiness of the eggplant flesh
I also finely chopped my spring onions and the shiitake mushrooms- Home Grown!
Then to the flavouring ingredients: ginger,white pepper,garlic and chili paste. You need more of this than you might think as really the tofu and eggplant are quite bland on their own and need a fair bit of ooomphing up. I used a good heaped tablespoon of each, and could have added just a touch more
Mix together thoroughly. I find that using my hands really is best for this kind of thing, and it's fun to mush it all up as well
If you want to check the seasoning, you can take a small amount and quickly cook it off - steam, fry, microwave, whatever- then adjust accordingly
Drain and pat dry the tofu
Cut in half- hopefully a bit neater than this though
Cut the eggplant into lovely half moons a bit over a centimetre thick, the slice a pocket through the centre of each without cutting all the way through the back
Pack the stuffing in nice and firmly or it will be too lose and fall out once cooked
Turn the tofu into a cute little sandwich by carefully loading it up with a decent amount of packed pork filling as well
Place the eggplant and the tofu into a lightly greased steamer basket, and steam for about 10/12 minutes or until the filling is cooked and the tofu is bouncy firm
Let it cool down, then cut the tofu into nice cubes- I cut mine into 6 pieces
Put the egg white into a shallow dish, and break up lightly with a fork.
Dip the pieces of tofu and eggplant into the flour, then the egg whites, then back into the flour again- making sure to shake off any excess at each dunking.
You could just mix the two together to make a slurry type of batter if you want instead, but I like the way this coating is firmer when it's cooked
Heat your oil and fry off the pieces until they are nice and crispy and starting to brown
Drain quickly on a rack while you do the rest, this will stop them going soggy
Cross section of both the eggplant on top, and the tofu underneath. Nice and cooked through inside but nice and crispy outside, yummo
I served my Yummy Cha dish with a nice dollop of chilli bean sauce, but you could have them plain, with soy sauce, black bean and garlic sauce, or whatever takes your fancy.
These will definitely go into my Dim Sum repertoire for the future and are a sure favourite already!
So Dear Readers, have you tried this dish before, and would you chose the tofu or eggplant version?
Now, as promised I have a Second Blogaversary Give Away!
This time the prize is a Junior Master Chef Burger Kit
to enter, just leave a comment on this post telling me if you'd like to win. I will draw the winner by my patented Cat-Raffle Method as usual, and announce the lucky person next post. Good Luck!