Spicy Glazed Eggplant

spicy glazed eggplant

Slender Asian eggplant magically holds its shape as you sauté it, without going mushy, and yet it collapses in the mouth with a final suggestion of its glaze, bold with Japanese seven-spice powder and the gentle heat of fresh ginger.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 minutes
Total Time: 16 minutes
6 servings

Ingredients:

• 1 1/4 pounds Asian eggplants (about 4), trimmed, halved lengthwise, and cut diagonally into 1 1/2-inch pieces
• 2 tablespoons mirin (Japanese sweet rice wine)
• 2 tablespoons soy sauce
• 1/2 teaspoon finely grated peeled ginger (use a Microplane)
• 1/8 teaspoon Japanese seven-spice powder (sometimes labeled “shichimi togarashi”), or to taste
• 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
• 1 tablespoon finely chopped chives

Preparation:

Toss eggplant with 1 teaspoon salt and drain in a colander, stirring occasionally, 45 minutes.
Rinse eggplant under cold water and dry well, pressing out any excess moisture.
Stir together mirin, soy sauce, ginger, and seven-spice powder.
Heat oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium-high heat until it shimmers, then sauté eggplant until browned, about 8 minutes. Stir in mirin mixture and cook, gently stirring and turning frequently, until sauce becomes a glaze and eggplant is browned and tender, about 1 minute.
Serve hot or at room temperature, sprinkled with chives.

Cooks' notes:
Eggplant can be sliced, salted, rinsed, and pressed 1 day ahead. Chill, covered.
Eggplant, without chives, can be made 2 hours ahead and kept at room temperature.