pork and basil eggplant with steamed rice

pork and basil eggplant with steamed rice

One of our favorite ways to eat ground pork is extra-crispy, browned in a skillet, and then flavored with a rich sauce of tamari, garlic, ginger, and vinegar. Eggplant, that gorgeous purple globe, gets chopped up and sautéed, adding soft pockets to the mix. Fresh basil is super fragrant and perfumes the dish in all the best ways. Cook, relax, and enjoy!

What you’ll need:
1 eggplant
1 medium red onion
1 oz fresh ginger
1 large clove garlic
1 cup basmati rice
8 oz ground pork
3 Tbsp tamari
3 Tbsp rice vinegar
1 oz fresh basil
coarse salt
neutral oil such as vegetable, safflower, or canola
freshly ground black pepper

Equipment:
small saucepan
large skillet

Recipe steps:
1. Prep eggplant
Cut eggplant into ½-inch cubes. Halve, peel, and thinly slice red onion. Peel and finely chop ginger and garlic.

2. Cook rice
Combine rice, 1½ cups water, and a pinch of salt in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, stir once, and cover. Reduce heat to low and cook until water is absorbed and rice is tender, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and keep covered until ready to serve.

3. Cook pork
Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon oil in large skillet over medium-high. Add pork and cook, breaking up with a wooden spoon and scraping the bottom of the skillet, until cooked through, browned, and crispy in spots, 4–5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer pork to a plate.

4. Cook eggplant
Add 2 tablespoons oil to same skillet. When shimmering, add eggplant and cook, stirring occasionally, until eggplant is browned and beginning to soften, about 5 minutes.

5. Finish eggplant
Add 1 tablespoon oil to skillet along with onion, ginger, and garlic. Cook, stirring often, until onions and eggplant are tender, about 3 minutes more. Return pork to skillet and add tamari and vinegar. Cook, stirring, until liquid is almost completely reduced, about 2 minutes.

6. Finish & Serve
Pick basil leaves from stems and add almost all to eggplant; stir to combine. Serve eggplant mixture over rice and top with remaining basil. Enjoy!