Chinese eggplants with minced pork (肉末烧茄子) and spicy garlic sauce is a humble and popular dish in Chinese kitchens. r A small amount of minced pork can significantly improve eggplants’ taste, enriching the layers of a humble eggplant stir-fry. For vegan readers, you can skip minced pork or try this eggplant with garlic sauce.

eggplants with minced pork

Braised eggplants are always my favorite method of making eggplants, using very basic seasonings and producing a well-balanced dish with a strong garlic aroma. There is another popular Chinese eggplant dish named “Yu Xiang Eggplants”, which is named “Chinese eggplants in spicy garlic sauce”. It has similar ingredients and cooking methods, but that’s a more complex version. If you love this flavor or love to cook eggplants, I highly recommend you try yuxiang eggplants too.

How to make the eggplants turn soft easily

Though eggplants can be extremely delicious, they are not liked by every housewife cook as they are hard to handle and need lots of oil. I have been trying to search for ways to reduce the oil absorbed by eggplants. The final solution is to soak the eggplants in slightly salty water and let them absorb the water as much as possible. The water contained in the eggplants can help to accelerate the cooking process and make the eggplants much softer.

eggplants with minced pork|chinasichuanfood.com

Eggplants are quite yummy when well cooked. The soft texture can greatly absorb the spicy garlic sauce and endow the dish with great flavor. The most common way of cooking eggplants in China includes

Ingredients Breakdown

  • doubanjiang is also named broad bean paste, a spicy chili sauce from Sichuan cuisine, made from broad beans. It has a lovely spicy flavor that combines well with most Chinese dishes. If you don’t have doubanjiang, you can use other chili paste to replace it.
  • Minced pork is used in a very small amount. We need to fry minced pork until crispy and aromatic. The aroma of the minced pork can improve the taste of the dish greatly even with a very small portion.
  • Garlic, ginger, and green onion create a basic savory base for braised eggplants.
  • Light soy sauce can provide a basic savory taste.
eggplants with minced pork

Instructions

Remove the ends of Asian eggplants and then cut them into small cubes (for the best flavor, try to cut each cube with some skin). Transfer them into a large pot filled with water, add a pinch of salt, and soak for 10 minutes. Add a weight if necessary to make sure the eggplants is well soaked. Set aside to drain completely.

Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a wok and fry the eggplants for 6-9 minutes until the eggplants become soft and withered. Transfer the eggplants out and leave the oil in.

eggplants with minced pork
eggplants with minced pork

Add marinated pork to stir-fry until aromatic and slightly golden brown . Transfer to the edges of the wok and place the doubanjiang in to fry for another 1 minute. Slow down the fire.

eggplants with minced pork

Add garlic, ginger and scallion onion until aromatic,

eggplants with minced pork

Return the eggplants along with fried minced pork, soy sauce, sugar and sesame oil. Mix well. Serve with chopped green onion garnished.

eggplants with minced pork

What to serve with

This is a savory dish and you can match it with a light Chineses style soup like winter melon soup, lotus root soup, and even egg drop soup. Besides, I highly recommend matching it with Chinese cucumber salad and steamed rice.

eggplants with minced pork

Other eggplants recipe on this site

Eggplants are cooked widely in Chinese cuisine with many methods. We have lots of yummy eggplants recipes you can check.

  1. Savory Crispy Eggplants
  2. Chinese Stuffed Eggplants
  3. Di San Xian—Chinese Sautéed Potato Eggplants and Green Peppers
  4. Chinese Steamed Eggplant Recipe
  5. Chinese Yu Xiang Eggplant Recipe
eggplants with minced pork

Chinese Eggplants with Minced Pork

Humble Chinese eggplants with minced pork
5 from 42 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Sichuan
Keyword: Eggplant, pork
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 2
Calories: 354kcal
Author: Elaine

Ingredients

  • 2 long Asian eggplants
  • 1 tbsp. salt
  • 1/4 cup minced pork
  • 1 tsp. minced ginger
  • 1/2 tbsp. Chinese cooking wine
  • 3 tbsp. cooking oil ,divided
  • 2 garlic cloves ,sliced
  • 1 thumb ginger ,sliced
  • 2 green onions ,white half and green half divided
  • 1/2 tbsp. doubanjiang ,skip this if you prefer a mild taste or double for a hotter version
  • 1 tbsp. light soy sauce
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. sesame oil

Instructions

  • Remove the ends of Asian eggplants and then cut into small cubes (for the best flavor, try to cut each cubes with some skin). Transfer them into a large pot filled with water, add 1 tbsp. salt and soak for 10 minutes. Add a weight if necessary to make sure the eggplants is well soaked. Set aside to drain completely.
  • Heat 3 tablespoons of oil in wok and fry the eggplants for 6-9 minutes until the eggplants become soft and withered. Transfer eggplants out and leave the oil in.
  • Add minced pork to stir-fry until aromatic and slightly golden brown. Add shaoxing wine along the edges. Transfer to the edges of the wok and place the doubanjiang in to fry for another 1 minute. Slow down the fire.
  • Add garlic, ginger and scallion onion until aroma.
  • Return the eggplants along with fried minced pork, soy sauce, sugar, salt and sesame oil. Mix well.
  • Garnish chopped green onion (green parts) and serve with steamed rice.

Video

Notes

If you want the eggplants to be crispier and harder, you can spread some cornstarch to coat the eggplants before cooking.

Nutrition

Calories: 354kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 29g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 20mg | Sodium: 434mg | Potassium: 538mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 85IU | Vitamin C: 5.9mg | Calcium: 18mg | Iron: 0.9mg
eggplants with minced pork
eggplants with minced pork

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80 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Thanks very very much for all your recipes this site is truly amazing!
    Quick question , could you add Chinkiang vinegar to this recipe? I have seen other recipes for Fish Fragrant Egg Plant that contain Chinkiang vinegar?
    Thanks in advance and thanks for the endless inspiration 🙂

    1. Sure, you can add some vinegar to bring a tiny sour taste. But fish fragrant is another taste with different sauce. Do not use so much vinegar in common braised eggplants, since we do not contain enough sugar.

  2. 5 stars
    This looks like the best recipe I’ve seen so far. But it should not be under “eggs and dairy!” Eggplant is a fruit, but used like a vegetable here.

  3. 5 stars
    Another 5 star recipe Elaine! I don’t know what I would do without your recipes and inspiration. You have taken my Chinese cooking to a new and higher level.

  4. 5 stars
    It is bringing back my craving in real chinese foods that you cant ever find here in Middle East
    Thank you for sharing Ms.Elaine

  5. 5 stars
    Hi Elaine,

    I tried this out and liked it very much. Thank you for this recipe. I have two questions though.
    How do you mange to keep the color on the eggplants? The only way I know of is adding some kind of acid (eg. vinegar or lemon juice). But I didn’t see that in the recipe. So the skin of the eggplants turned somewhat brown- grayish during frying. It didn’t affect the taste, but I would like to know how to make it look so pretty like on your photos.

    My second question is regarding the minced pork. I can buy something similar in the supermarket, but that’s mostly ground using a meat grinder. However looking at your pictures I guess that’s not the same you are using. So do you mince it yourself using a knife? If so, what cut of pork do you usually use for this, belly or shoulder or something else?

    1. Andreas,
      To keep the purple color, both white vinegar (or lemon juice) and oil can help. Cook less eggplants with more oil can keep the purple color too. Or you can add some white vinegar or lemon juice int he soaking process.
      For the second question, I love to use hand chopped pork. I love to use shoulder (pork butt). Any cuts with some fat can work fine for all purpose minced pork.

      1. Thank you for your reply Elaine!

        By the way the initial soaking of the eggplants is a really great trick I learned from this. I always hated using so much oil for frying eggplants. I’ll do this for other recipes from now on, too. And the next time I’ll add some vinegar and see how that works out.

    1. Hi Adrien,

      as you probably know raw eggplants are very much like a sponge. So they’ll soak up liquid very fast. So if you put them in a wok with oil it’ll be dry very fast. Soaking them beforehand spares you of adding a gallon of oil and keeps the eggplants nice and fresh instead of dripping with fat.

  6. Can you marinate the eggplant in the pork marinade, if you’re not using pork? Or just add them while cooking the eggplant? Thanks!

    1. I still recommend cook eggplants and protein separately, as they need different cooking time and fire. You can replace pork with chicken or other protein and then follow the instructions.

  7. 5 stars
    This recipe was delicious. I subbed ground beef for pork, tamari for soy sauce, omitted sugar and doubled doubanjiang. Next time we’ll dice the eggplant smaller as that took longer to cook. Even so, it was relatively quick. Lovely and spicy with pronounced flavors of ginger and just enough heat.