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Asian Vegetable Stew

Although this really is a stew, it probably deserves a fancier name. It's a delicious mixture of summer vegetables, similar to the French dish ratatouille, that I season with Chinese flavorings. Serve it hot or at room temperature. If you happen to have any left over, use it as a filling for omelets.

Type: Vegetables
Courses: Soup
Serves: 8 people

Recipe Ingredients

6   Dried black mushrooms
1/4 cup 59mlChicken broth
1/4 cup 59mlDry sherry or Chinese rice wine
3 tablespoons 45mlSoy sauce
1 teaspoon 5mlChili paste
1 teaspoon 5mlSesame oil
1/2 teaspoon 2.5mlFreshly-ground black pepper
1   Leek, white part only - trimmed (medium)
3   Asian eggplant - (abt 1 lb) = (or regular eggplant)
3   Tomatoes - peeled (medium)
1   Red bell pepper - seeded (small)
3   Zucchini - (abt 1 lb) (small)
3 tablespoons 45mlVegetable oil
6 tablespoons 90mlGarlic cloves - lightly mashed (large)
4 oz 113gGinger - lightly mashed
1/4 lb 113g / 4ozPearl onions = (or 1 small onion, coarsely chopped)
2 teaspoons 10mlCornstarch - dissolved in
4 teaspoons 20mlWater
2 teaspoons 10mlSesame oil

Recipe Instructions

Soak the mushrooms in warm water to cover for 30 minutes; drain. Cut off and discard the stems and cut the caps in half. Combine the sauce ingredients in a small bowl; set aside.

Cut the leek, eggplant, and tomatoes into 1-inch chunks. Cut the bell peppers into 1-inch squares. Cut the zucchini into 1/2-inch-thick slices.

Place a large pot over high heat until hot. Add the vegetable oil, swirling to coat the pan. Add the garlic, ginger, and onions and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the leek and cook for 1 minute. Add the eggplant and cook for 2 minutes. Add the mushrooms, bell pepper, zucchini, tomatoes, and sauce; mix well. Bring to a boil; reduce the heat, cover, and simmer until all the vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes.

Add the cornstarch solution and cook, stirring, until the sauce boils and thickens. Stir in the sesame oil just before serving.

"Everybody's Wokking" by Martin Yan, (Harlow & Ratner, 1991)"


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