Spicy Bean Paste Eggplant

Spicy Bean Paste Eggplant

This dish was originally created to test the Lee Kum Kee™ Brand Spicy Bean Sauce, which describes itself as being a ‘Ma Po Sauce’ and carries a recipe on the label for the classic Chinese dish Ma Po Tofu. The recipe is fairly simple and I followed it closely except that I substituted cubes of eggplant for the tofu as I am not a huge fan. In any event, my eventual conclusion was that the Lee Kum Kee product rather failed at reproducing the proper ‘Ma Po’ flavors. It did, however, make for a very admirable chili bean paste in its own right and I was pleased enough with the test dish to cook it again.

The Basic Method

Frying the Ground Pork with Scallion
Frying the Ground Pork with Scallion

Heat your wok to medium and pour in a tablespoon of oil. When the oil is hot, add the pork and stir until it loses its pink color then add the scallion. Stir for just a moment or two longer then remove everything to a bowl, allowing as much oil as possible to drain back into the wok.

Coating the Eggplant with Flour
Coating the Eggplant with Flour

Cut the eggplants into medium size chunks and then toss with enough flour to coat them, shaking off any excess if necessary.

Frying the Eggplant
Frying the Eggplant

Turn the heat under the wok up to high and add 3 tablespoons or so of oil. When the oil reaches the smoking point, add in the eggplant and stir-fry rapidly until the pieces take on a nice golden color. You may find it necessary to add a bit more oil as you do this as eggplant tends to absorb quite a bit and will stick to the pan if there isn’t enough to fry it properly.

Finishing the Spicy Bean Paste Eggplant
Finishing the Spicy Bean Paste Eggplant

Add back the meat mixture and the Spicy Bean Sauce and sir until everything is hot. If the sauce is a little too thick then add a splash or two of water and stir it in. Plate and serve immediately.


Your Recipe Card:

Spicy Bean Paste Eggplant

Spicy Bean Paste Eggplant captures the bold spirit of Sichuan cuisine and features cubes of fried eggplant stir-fried with ground pork in a spicy sauce.
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: Chinese
Keyword: Chili Bean Paste, Eggplant, Ground Pork, Stir-fried
Author: John Thompson

Ingredients

  • 2 small Eggplants
  • ¼ pound ground Pork
  • ½ jar of Lee Kum Kee Spicy Bean Sauce *See Notes
  • 2-3 tbsp. Flour
  • 1 Scallion chopped into rings

Instructions

  • Fry the pork in a tablespoon of oil over moderately high heat until it loses its pink color then add the scallion. Stir for just a moment or two longer then remove everything to a bowl.
  • Cut the Eggplants into medium dice and then toss with enough flour to coat.
  • Fry the Eggplant Cubes in 3 tablespoons of oil over high heat until golden.
  • Add the meat back to the pan with the Spicy Bean Sauce and cook for a few minutes longer, adding a little water if the sauce becomes too thick.
  • Serve hot.

Notes

Lee Kum Kee™ Brand Spicy Bean Sauce is available in many Asian groceries and mainline supermarkets, as well as online. If you cannot source it, other chili bean pastes may be substituted.

Comments, questions or suggestions most welcome!