Eggplant, “Char Siu” Style by Hetty Lui McKinnon
"Eggplant, a renowned carrier of flavor, greedily absorbs the sauce before it is roasted at high heat, emerging sweet and silky, imbued with lots of dark, caramelized notes."
We are so excited to share this recipe fromfor her Eggplant, “Char Siu” Style, excerpted from her fifth cookbook, Tenderheart.
Also from Tenderheart:
You can hear our conversation with Hetty here:
Hetty writes in Tenderheart1:
Char siu, the strips of barbecued roast pork with their signature crimson exterior, is a treasured Cantonese meat, and the most popular siu mei dish. Siu mei is a term that refers to the roasted meats popular in Hong Kong, but also commonly found in Chinatown windows around the world. Most city-dwelling Cantonese kids grew up eating siu mei—during my carnivorous youth, as my mother arrived home from the store, I would sidle up with my best good-daughter-face and charm a few slices of warm, juicy char siu and crispy pork crackling before dinnertime. In this recipe, eggplant is marinated, char siu style, in a fragrant, fruity barbecue sauce. Eggplant, a renowned carrier of flavor, greedily absorbs the sauce before it is roasted at high heat, emerging sweet and silky, imbued with lots of dark, caramelized notes. A note for gluten intolerant cooks: make sure your hoisin sauce is gluten-free or use the homemade version on page 151 of Tenderheart. This marinade is incredibly versatile and can be used to marinate and roast firm tofu and other vegetables in the exact same way. This is best eaten with rice, of course, but it’s also good stuffed into a crusty roll with cilantro, mint and salad greens, or used to make eggplant char siu bao (there’s a bao recipe in To Asia, With Love).
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