THAI SPICY EGGPLANT WITH BASIL

I’m a huge fan of eggplant and Thai food so of course, I’d adore this recipe. I hope you enjoy this simple yet flavorful dish. By the way, if you don’t have Thai basil, you can just use regular basil and this dish will still come out tasting pretty amazing!

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Thai Spicy Eggplant with Basil

Source: Lo Huynh (2 servings)

Ingredients:
1 lb. Italian eggplants, cut into bite-size pieces
2 tablespoons kosher salt
1 each Thai bird’s eye chili, minced
1 each shallot, minced
6 cloves garlic, minced
½ cup fresh Thai basil leaves
3 tablespoons canola oil

Sauce:
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon white vinegar
½ cup chicken broth

Cornstarch Slurry:
1 teaspoon cornstarch
2 tablespoons cold water

Directions:
1. Cut the eggplants into bite-sized pieces. Sprinkle with the 2 tablespoons of kosher salt in a bowl and cover with cold water. Let this soak for 30 minutes to diminish the bitterness of the eggplants.
2. After 30 minutes, rinse off the eggplants to remove the salt solution and let drain and dry.
3. In a wok, over high heat, add 3 tablespoons of canola oil.
4. Once the oil is hot, add the minced chilies, garlic, and shallots. Saute until fragrant for about a minute.
5. Add the eggplants and saute for a couple minutes until there is a nice sear on the eggplants.
6. Once the eggplants get soft, add the sauce mixture and cook for about five to seven minutes, or until the eggplants are slightly translucent.
7. Add the cornstarch slurry mixture {make the mixture by mixing the cornstarch with 2 tablespoons cold water until the cornstarch is dissolved} and stir until the sauce thickens. This should take about a minute.
8. Add the fresh Thai basil and serve with steamed Jasmine rice.

ROASTED GARLIC MUSHROOMS

This is a great side dish or an amazing appetizer that you can serve with a nice baguette!

roastedmushrooms

Roasted Garlic Mushrooms

Source: Lo Huynh (2 servings)

Ingredients:
3 tablespoons salted sweet cream butter, cut into 1/2″ cubes
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
8 ounces cremini mushrooms
1 tablespoon capers, rinsed and rough chopped

Garnish:
1 tablespoon scallions, chopped

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. In a baking dish, toss mushrooms with extra virgin olive oil, garlic, balsamic vinegar, capers, and garlic.
3. Top with butter and roast for about 30 minutes.
4. Garnish with the scallions.

BALSAMIC AND BROWN SUGAR ROASTED BRUSSELS SPROUTS

This is seriously one of the easiest side dishes you can make. It’s also great as an appetizer too!

brusselssprouts

Balsamic and Brown Sugar Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Source: Lo Huynh (4 servings)

Ingredients:
1 lb. brussels sprouts, cut off the ends and cut in half
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
tt kosher salt
tt freshly ground black pepper

Directions:
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
2. In a bowl, whisk the brown sugar, balsamic vinegar, kosher salt, black pepper, and extra virgin olive oil until blended.
3. Add the brussels sprouts to this mixture.
4. Pour the brussels sprouts onto a foil lined sheet pan and roast for about 30 minutes, or until the brussels sprouts are crisp on the outside and tender on the inside. Make sure to turn the brussels sprouts halfway through cooking time so they cook evenly.
5. Serve immediately.

GARLIC ROASTED ASPARAGUS AND BABY OYSTER MUSHROOMS

This is such a simple yet fantastic side dish to make. Serve this with some awesome braised short ribs or a nice steak! This would also make a wonderful side dish to serve for the holidays.

Garlic Roasted Asparagus and Baby Oyster Mushrooms

Source: Lo Huynh (4 servings)

Ingredients:
½ pound asparagus, trim off bottom ends
3.5 ounces baby oyster mushrooms
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
tt sea salt
tt fresh ground black pepper

1 tablespoon sweet cream butter

Directions:
1. Put all the ingredients together in an oven safe pan and gently toss together. Place the 1 tablespoon of sweet cream butter on top of the mixed ingredients.
2. Roast in an oven at 400 degrees Farenheit for about 8 to 10 minutes or until the asparagus is tender and lightly brown.

SICHUAN CHILI GARLIC EGGPLANT

If you love eggplant and chili garlic sauce, you’ll love this dish!

Sichuan Chili Garlic Eggplant

Source: Lo Huynh (2 servings)

Ingredients:
2 each Chinese eggplants, cut in half crosswise, and then into 1″ strips lenghwise, so you should have 1″ x 4″ strips
1 stalk scallions, cut into 2″ pieces

Pork:
¼ pound ground pork
1 teaspoon corn starch
¼ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced

Sauce:
1 tablespoon chili garlic sauce {Rooster/Sriracha brand}
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 teaspoon corn starch
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1 tablespoon Chinese black vinegar
1 tablespoon Chinese rice cooking wine
½ cup chicken broth

Directions:
1. In a bowl, mix the ground pork with the 1 teaspoon corn starch, minced ginger, minced garlic, and 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper and set aside.
2. Mix the sauce ingredients together and set aside.
3. Over high heat, add 1 tablespoon vegetable oil in a wok. Once wok is hot, saute the ground pork until it is fully cooked. This should take about five minutes.
4. Add the Chinese eggplants to the wok and sear the eggplants on each side. This should take a couple more minutes.
5. Add the sauce mixture to the wok and let this simmer for about five minutes, or until the eggplants are cooked to your desired liking.
6. Add the scallions and serve with Jasmine or Japanese rice.

BUDDHA’S DELIGHT

Sometimes my husband complains to me that I don’t incorporate enough vegetables in his meals so I decided to make him this vegetarian dish…to which he looks at it tonight and says to me, “Where’s the meat?” I was like….ugggghhhh…. Anyway, I hope you like this dish. I personally loved it and think I may want to start incorporating more vegetarian meals into our diet.

Buddha’s Delight

Source: Lo Huynh (4 servings)

Ingredients:
2 tablespoons canola oil
½ each yellow onion, julienned
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
4 ounces snap peas, string
4 leaves napa cabbage, cut into 2 inch pieces
1 14 oz. can baby corn, wash and drain
6 each fresh shitake mushrooms, cut in half
1 each carrot, cut into slices on the diagonal
2 stalks celery, cut into slices on the diagonal
8 ounces firm tofu, cut into 1″ cubes

Sauce:
2 tablespoons vegetarian oyster sauce
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons Chinese rice wine
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
1 teaspoon corn starch
½ teaspoon white pepper powder

Directions:
1. Mix your sauce ingredients together and set aside.
2. In a wok, heat up the oil. Add the tofu and sear on both sides.
3. Add the onions, garlic, and ginger and saute until fragrant {about one minute}.
4. Add in the rest of your vegetables and saute for about five minutes. You want your vegetables to be somewhat cooked but still have a crisp to them.
5. Add in your sauce and saute until your sauce is heated up and coats all your vegetables and tofu {about another couple of minutes}.
6. Serve with some steamed Jasmine rice or Japanese rice.

CHINESE VEGETABLE CASSEROLE

Lunch today consisted of 50 pieces of chicken McNuggets in which my husband and i each managed to wolf down 20 pieces…which of course left us feeling very sick and disgusted…or I was left feeling disgusted with myself. Like WHY do I do that? WHY?

So for dinner, I had to counter that meal with a vegetarian casserole in a cheap attempt to make myself feel better for eating that McDonald’s crap. That was prolly a billion calories that I didn’t need and a clogged artery…

Anyway, I hope you enjoy this vegetable casserole…it tastes very HEALTHY.

* serves 4

3 dried shitake mushrooms, soaked in hot water until soft, remove stem, and julienne
2 stalk scallions, chopped {separate white parts and save green part of scallions for garnish}
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
1 cup Napa cabbage, cut into bite-sized pieces
32 oz. stock {chicken or vegetable}
1/2 of a daikon, diced into 1-inch pieces
2 stalks celery, sliced
1 carrot, sliced
4 oz. deep fried soy bean cake, sliced in half

2 oz. bean thread noodles

1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon rice cooking wine
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon black vinegar
1 tablespoon Chinese barbecue {sa-tsa} sauce

1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon water

1. In a stockpot, add 3 tablespoons oil. Once oil is hot, add shitake mushrooms, white parts of scallions, and ginger and saute until fragrant.
2. Add napa cabbage and cook until tender.
3. Add stock, daikon, carrots, celery, deep fried soy bean cake, soy sauce, rice cooking wine, kosher salt, black pepper, oyster sauce, sesame oil, sugar, black vinegar, and Chinese barbecue {sa-tsa} sauce. Bring to a boil and then let simmer for about 30 minutes.
4. Add the bean thread noodles and cook for an additional ten minutes.
5. Garnish with the green parts of the scallions and serve with rice.