Saturday, December 17, 2011

Gaji Namul -Eggplant Side from Korea

This is one of the simplest eggplant preparation or a salad that I have made. Very appetizing and an excellent side with rice and your choice of gravy. In fact the way of preparation intrigued me. Never before I have steamed eggplant and used. Anyway if I am to use cliche, this is a simple side easy to make and very appetizing or hunger enhancing. I have adapted it from Maangchi, an excellent site for Korean recipes.

Eggplants:  2-3 medium sized Asian -purple coloured long thin - eggplants chopped into 1-2 inch strips lengthwise. 

Garlic Cloves: 2-3 small minced
Scallion/Spring Onions: 1 chopped
Toasted Sesame Seeds: 2 tsp
Hot Pepper Flakes: 1-2 tsp
Sesame oil :2 tsp +
 Soy Sauce: 2tbsp +

Chop the eggplant into small strips lengthwise. Steam the pieces in a bowl for about 10 minutes or until cooked in a steamer or pressure cooker on high-med heat. Remove and Keep aside to cool.Once cooled you can drain off all the water collected in the bowl.Lightly mash the eggplant.

Add in  the minced garlic,hot pepper flakes,sesame seeds,chopped scallion,sesame oil and soysauce to the eggplant bowl and mix well. I presume that spicy Korean hot pepper flakes are needed,but I have gone for the regular chilli flakes. Adjust the taste as needed. Salt is present is soysauce and is hence avoided. Serve at room temperature as an appetizing salad.

As per the original recipe, the more the sesame oil and garlic ,much better the salad is. I agree with oil part. But not too sure of the garlic part. I am not a fan of the raw garlic and if you are too lazy to mince the garlic while preparing the salad then you may end up biting into one garlic piece which will put others off you.!I went with the 2 small cloves and it was nicely garlicky without going overboard.But suit yourself. The perfect aroma from the dish will invite you to eat more dinner. 

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