I saw this recipe last week in Real Simple Magazine and knew I had to make is ASAP. I took a quick picture on my phone, to remind me to search for the recipe online later (how handy!), and then added it to my Menu folder on Pinterest for this week! This is the kind of recipe where you probably have most of the ingredients in your pantry, and most likely just have to pick up the produce. If you like Chinese food (but don’t like all the calories), then this is the recipe for you! It was so flavorful and had the perfect amount of spice. If you are serving this to kids, I would probably half the pepper, instead of leaving it whole. Even with the whole pepper it wasn’t too spicy, it had just the right amount of heat (My husband probably would have even enjoyed more spice). Of course, when chopping the jalapeno make sure you wear your pepper cutting gloves….or get your husband to do it for you (no more pepper hands for me!). I am still paranoid about dealing with these jalapenos after the incident with the Mexican baked eggs….
Anyway, this recipe called for a lot of oil, but I cut it down because it’s not unnecessary I used a technique called ‘dry frying’ the tofu, which eliminates the oil ‘needed’ for frying it. You can still get that crispy fried-like outside that most people enjoy on tofu. You can visit Melissa Ray Davis for step by step directions on how to dry fry tofu. It’s a very helpful tutorial. Anyway, after the tofu was cooked the recipe went super quick, and it was super easy. You also don’t need a lot of oil to saute the eggplant, because it will soften up without it. I only used 1 TBS even though the recipe called for 3. You can save a lot of calories and fat by cutting this down. I was also super excited to use chives and basil from my new herb garden that I planted over the weekend! Additionally, you could add pretty much whatever veggies you want to this recipe (or meat even). It’s very saucy (yum), and I think broccoli, water chestnuts, peppers, spinach, mushrooms….pretty much anything would be a nice addition. Ok, lets get to it!
- 1 cup long-grain white rice
- 1/2 cup hoisin sauce
- 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1 tablespoons canola oil
- 1 pound firm tofu—drained patted dry, and cut into 1-inch cubes
- 1 small eggplant about 1 3/4 pounds, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 4 scallions sliced, white and green parts separated
- 2 cloves garlic chopped
- 1 red serrano or jalapeño chili sliced
- kosher salt
- 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves torn
Cook the rice according to the package directions. In a small bowl, whisk together the hoisin, vinegar, and cornstarch.
Meanwhile, in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat add the tofu. Use dry-fry method to cook.
Add 1 tablespoon of oil to the skillet. Add the eggplant, scallion whites, garlic, chili, and ¼ teaspoon salt. Cook, tossing frequently, until the eggplant is tender, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the hoisin mixture, tofu, and scallion greens and cook, tossing gently, until the sauce is thickened, 1 to 2 minutes. Serve with the rice and sprinkle with the basil.
Tip: Give the hoisin mixture an extra whisk just before adding it to the skillet to redistribute the cornstarch.
Hands-On Time: 30m
Total Time: 30m
Recipe adapted from Real Simple Magazine.