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SZECHWAN EGGPLANT AND TOFU
(Serves 4)

3 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1/4 cup dry sherry or Chinese rice wine
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 tablespoon white or brown sugar
cayenne pepper to taste
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
3 Cakes firm tofu, cut into strips
3 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons peanut oil
8 scallions: greens minced, whites in strips, keep separate
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
1 large eggplant, cut into strips, thinly
1 bunch cilantro, minced (optional)
3/4 tsp salt

Combine soy sauce, vinegar, sherry, sugar in a liquid-measuring
cup. Add enough water to make up to 1 cup. Place cornstarch in a
small bowl, pour in the liquid, pour on the liquid & whisk till
dissolved. Set aside.

Heat a large wok over a high flame. Add oil & onion & stir fry
for about a minute. Add eggplant & salt & stir fry for 8 to 10
minutes till the eggplant is soft. Add garlic, ginger & black
pepper & cayenne. Cook a few minutes more.

Add tofu & scallion bottoms. Stir the bowl of liquid that has been
set aside & add to the wok. Mix well & stir fry for another few
minutes till the sauce is thickened.

Remove from the heat & serve over rice topped with scallion greens
& cilantro.

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