Friday, September 7, 2007

Broiled Eggplant Japonaise: Brutti Ma Buoni

If there was ever a case for not judging a book by its terrfiyingly scalded cover, Broiled Eggplant Japonaise is it. DAMN, this is good. Traumatizingly ugly, but good.

When I say “ugly,” I don’t mean “slightly unattractive," “aesthetically challenged,” or “appearance deficient.” I mean “Chinese crested dog mated with an Orc.”

I mean “the August 22nd Rangers-Orioles game.” (NOTE: This is a baseball score.)

I mean “all the clothes on Go Fug Yourself, but especially this Chloe Sevigny hat.”

I mean "the political prospects of closeted Idaho senator Larry Craig."

In other words, Serious Eats was not kidding when it compared this dish to a bowl of slugs.

Yet, if you can get past the hideous, hideous fa├žade, it's a pleasant surprise – a filling, easily prepared, vegetarian-friendly meal with honest-to-goodness Asian flavor. For health/availability reasons I cut the oil by a third and used a large regular eggplant. Still, damn tasty.

Behold, if you dare...

Broiled Eggplant Japonaise
3 servings
Adapted from Serious Eats/Jacques Pepin.

2 tablespoons Canola oil
1 gigantic eggplant
1 clove garlic, minced
1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon Tabasco sauce

1) Turn on your broiler and cover a cookie sheet with aluminum foil.

2) Cut the stem ends off your eggplant. Proceed slicing the eggplant into long strips, each about 1/2-inch in thickness. Drizzle the oil on the cookie sheet and mix it around with the eggplant. Sprinkle with a little salt. Broil for about 4 or 5 minutes per side, until eggplant is tender.

3) While eggplant is cooking, mix garlic, soy sauce, sugar, and tabasco sauce in a large bowl.

4) Once eggplant is finished, throw into the bowl with the marinade and toss gently, so eggplant is covered. Serve.

Approximate Calorie, Fat, and Price Per Serving
181 calories, 9.9 g fat, $0.57

2 tablespoons Canola oil: 248 calories, 28 g fat, $0.08
1 gigantic eggplant: 230 calories, 1.8 g fat, $1.39
1 clove garlic: 5 calories, 0 g fat, $0.05
1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce: 13 calories, 0 g fat, $0.14
1 teaspoon sugar: 46 calories, 0 g fat, $0.01
1/4 teaspoon Tabasco sauce: negligible calories and fat, $0.03
Salt: negligible calories and fat, $0.02
TOTAL: 542 calories, 29.8 g fat, $1.72
PER SERVING (TOTAL/3): 181 calories, 9.9 g fat, $0.57

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Teeny said...

I didn't know you could eat the skin of the eggplant

Jen said...

Oh yeah. I love this dish at the local Chinese (?) restaurant. It is fugly but delicious. If you like eggplant.

That, though, is a whole other discussion.

Earlene said...

Interesting to know.

Anonymous said...

I loved it!!!!! After broiling the eggplants (i used Japanese ones), i cut them in small bites and i put the sauce in a pan with some cornstarch.... through eggplants in and coat them in the sauce..... Y U M M Y ! ! !

Anonymous said...

Really easy and delicious. I will definitely make this again!! Also, "through" and "threw" are different words.