Mapo Eggplant Tofu

Serves 2-4

Mapo Sauce:

½ cup cool water

1 tablespoon cornstarch

2 tablespoons black bean garlic sauce

1 tablespoons spicy chili sauce

2 tablespoons Japanese mirin

1 teaspoon blond miso

1 tablespoon sake, dry white wine or dry sherry

1/4 cup peanut or vegetable oil, divided

1" knob fresh ginger, minced

2 plump garlic cloves, minced

1 medium eggplant, peeled and cubed

1 block extra firm tofu, cubed

½ teaspoon ground Sichuan pepper

1 bunch green onions, chopped (white to dark green parts)

Make sauce:

Whisk together cool water and cornstarch then stir in remaining ingredients and gently whisk until all ingredients are evenly combined. Set aside.

Set a large wok or sauté pan over high heat and pour in two tablespoons oil. When the oil looks as if it’s moving, add in minced ginger and garlic and stir fry until fragrant—less than a minute. Add in eggplant and continue stir-frying for two minutes, then whisk sauce and add it in. Stir and add in tofu. Bring to a bubble, reduce heat, sprinkle with ground Sichuan pepper and simmer for two minutes. Scatter with green onions and serve over rice.