Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Knockin' Off My Favorite Dish Ever

I have been trying to knock off this totally fantastic chili-garlic sauce for a while now.  Previous attempts have proven quite tasty, but not really all that similar to the one on my favorite dish at Siam Thai--eggplant jay.  That sauce is like heaven.  I could almost drink it by the glass.  I have to restrain myself from licking the plate in the restaurant.  It is that good.  Hence my wanting to have a knock-off at home.
Finally--after trying different vinegars, hot sauces, and levels of garlic--I have come close to recreating those heavenly eggplant jay flavors.  Possibly as close as I ever will unless I use store-bought garlic chili sauce and MSG, neither of which I plan to do.  Its a pretty amazing knock-off, I think.  I am quite pleased with it.  It was a magnificent way to dress our first eggplants of the year, too.  With enough for lunchtime leftovers the next day as a delightful bonus!  Hooray!
Spicy Roast Eggplant Sauce

8-10 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 C tamari/soy sauce

1/4 C brown sugar
4 T red wine vinegar
2 T white wine vinegar
1/4 C canola oil (garlic infused, if possible)
1/2 t crushed red pepper (more to taste)
handful of Thai basil
3-7 Asian eggplants


Combine all ingredients in a fairly deep oven-safe dish.  
Add eggplant, chopped into fairly large pieces, and toss with the sauce until well coated.  
Bake at 400 degrees F for about 30 minutes, or until very, very tender.  
When the eggplants are just about finished stir-fry all other desired vegetables.  
When they are cooked to your desired level add the eggplants and sauce and stir fry for another minute.  
Serve over rice or rice noodles. 
Yum.

8 comments:

  1. Looks delish!

    ~Have a lovely day!

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  2. now that looks GREAT. Just seeing eggplants in market now and I may have to see if I can coax my family into liking eggplant :)

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    1. I didn't think I liked it for a long time because I'd only had the big, fat Italian kind. While I can eat those now, they are still not my favorite. The skinny Asian ones have a thinner skin and texture that appeals to me more. That was a SWELL discovery. Thanks to a lady at the farmer's market, as it happens!

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    2. well, interesting! I've only had the big fat ones and never eaten or cooked with the Asian ones. Now I'm curious. . .

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  3. oh - and what other veggies do you recommend? How many more cups of veggies should I add?

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    1. The restaurant always serves it with bell peppers and onions, fairly coarsely chopped. We've added mushrooms and greens at home, but the peppers-and-onions is the classic.

      As to amounts, it's probably three cups-ish. Honestly, I probably shouldn't even post recipes since I eyeball so much...not that I let that stop me, obviously! :)

      For Matt and me we'll use, two bell peppers, one large onion, and around five eggplants, on average, but of course, it depends on if they're big honkin' peppers, itty-bitty eggplants, etc.

      We've done it two ways. One, while the eggplants were roasting I stir fried the peppers and onions and then combine everything at the end. Two, I roast the eggplant until it's about half done and then add in the peppers and onions and let them all finish roasting together. Both work. The latter is easier, has fewer dishes, and doesn't heat up the kitchen so much, but there is something about stir-fried peppers that I love more. So, it's a toss up.

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    2. thank you! I agree with you about eyeballing things - I usually think twice before I post a recipe because it's so sketchy :)

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