Sichuan Aubergine

  • Serves4
  • DifficultyEasy
2 to 3 Japanese aubergines, sliced into batons
Peanut or vegetable oil for frying
3 tablespoons black rice vinegar
3 tablespoons honey
1 spring onion, thinly sliced

For the batter

100g potato flour
2 egg yolks, beaten
½ teaspoon crushed Sichuan peppercorns, ground
½ tablespoon Chinese five spice
½ teaspoon salt
100ml ice cold sparkling water

For the sauce

1 tablespoon Sichuan peppercorns, ground
2 red chillies, sliced
1 inch ginger, peeled and grated
3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon potato starch
3 tablespoons oil

1. Make the batter by whisking together the egg yolks and potato starch. Season it with the Sichuan pepper, five spice, salt and add the water.

2. Dip the aubergine in the batter and fry in hot vegetable or peanut oil; this should be heated to about 170°C. Fry them until they’re lightly golden and cooked through, this will depend on how thinly you’ve sliced the aubergine, but it should take around 3 minutes. When they are cooked, remove them using a slotted spoon and dry them on some kitchen paper.

3. To make the sauce, put the red chilli, ginger, Sichuan pepper, salt and garlic cloves in a pestle and mortar and bash it. Add in the potato starch and leave it to one side.

4. Put a wok on the heat with around 3 tablespoons of oil and fry this mix. Add the aubergines and toss them together and put them onto your serving plate. In the same wok, add the black rice vinegar and honey, heat them through then pour it over your aubergines.

5. Scatter over some spring onion and serve.

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