STICKY KOREAN AUBERGINE: A PLANT-BASED RECIPE TO HELP GET YOU THROUGH VEGANUARY

 In Health, Wellbeing

Our friends over at The Braizen Kitchen have created this beautiful recipe to help those taking part in veganuary and those who just want to cook up a great plant-based meal.

This sticky Korean aubergine recipe will rock your world. It’s a recipe even meat eaters will love and if you’re being a little more conscious about your meat consumption this year, it’s the perfect dish to leave you feeling inspired by plant-based cooking and completely satisfied. You won’t feel like you’re being sold short on flavour or texture with this bold plate of food.

Add this to your repertoire of plant-based recipes and do let us know what you thought!

You can read more about The Braizen Kitchen and their delicious food here.

Sticky Korean Aubergine 

Serves 4 

Vegan + gluten free

This recipe is a twist on Korean fried chicken, you still have the sticky consistency of the sauce and the crispiness of the batter, it’s a win win. As this recipe involves frying, pop your oven on low to keep things warm as you go. 

For the crispy aubergine will need:

2 aubergines 

300ml frying oil, such as ground nut or sunflower

40g cornflour 

100g rice flour 

Big pinch baking powder

Big pinch salt 

½ tsp turmeric

160ml sparkling water 

Sesame seeds

Small handful coriander leaves 

Finely sliced red chilli

For the Korean chilli sauce: 

2 tablespoons gochujang 

2 tablespoons Sriracha sauce

1 tbsp light soy

1 tbsp dark soy 

1 tbsp minced ginger 

2 tablespoons ketchup

2 tablespoon toasted sesame oil

4 tablespoons granulated or caster sugar

4 tablespoons rice wine vinegar

Method

First off get your batter sorted, add all the dry ingredients to a bowl and slowly whisk in the sparkling water to form a smooth batter. The batter needs to coat the back of a spoon, if you feel it’s a little loose, just whisk in some extra rice flour and set aside to rest.

For the chilli sauce, add all of your wet ingredients apart from the sesame oil to a sauce pan and bring to a simmer, whisking as you go, then add the minced ginger. You just need it all to come together and the sugar to dissolve. Once incorporated whisk in the sesame oil, this will give it a lovely glossy finish. Set aside and keep warm.

Take the aubergines and slice them into 2cm wedges and then in half width ways, you want short wedges, so they cook evenly. 

Take a heavy bottomed pan or wok, fill with the oil and bring to 170C, an electric thermometer is useful here, if you aren’t sure adding a little teaspoon of the batter to the oil will let you know, if it sizzles you are ready! Dip the pieces of aubergine in the batter and pop in the hot oil, don’t add too many at a time as it will cool down the oil temperature. If they colour too quickly, turn the heat down just a little. Gently fry for 4-5 mins, this will give you a lovely brown tempura and pillow light flesh inside. 

When you have fried all your aubergine, take your sauce and add just over half to a shallow pan (an enamel roasting pan is ideal for this), add the aubergine and toss in the sauce, making sure all those guys are well covered. If you like things extra saucy, add some more or serve on the side!  Sprinkle with sesame seeds and coriander. Serve immediately, can be served as a starter or as I did with steamed rice and wok fried pak choi. 

Enjoy!