Sichuan Aubergines with Ginger, Garlic and Chilli
Servings 4 people
- 1.2 kg aubergines about 4
- 100 ml vegetable oil
- 400 g udon noodles
- 4 spring onions trimmed and finely sliced
- 1 bunch fresh coriander leaves picked and roughly chopped
- 2 tsp cornflour
- 3 tbsp vegetable oil
- 2 tbsp Sichuan chilli bean paste
- 2 chillies large dried red chillies, crumbled
- 2 cm ginger peeled and finely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 250 ml stock chicken or vegetable
- 2 tbsp sherry dry
- 1 tbsp rice vinegar
- 2 tbsp soft brown sugar
- Cut the aubergines into 1-2cm-thick rounds, then cut each round in half across the middle. Sprinkle with a little fine sea salt, put in a colander and leave to drain in the sink or on the draining board for at least 30 minutes, to draw out excess water.
- Heat the oven to 220C/425F/gas mark 7. Tip the aubergines into a roasting tin, toss them in the oil and roast for 40-50 minutes, until temptingly golden on the outside and completely soft within.
- Pour in the stock and cornflour paste, cook for a few minutes, until the sauce thickens, then add the rice wine, sugar and vinegar, and simmer for a few minutes, to give the flavours a chance to meld.
- Meanwhile, cook the noodles according to the packet instructions, then transfer to warmed shallow bowls. Top with the aubergines and sauce, scatter on the spring onions and coriander, and serve.