Pan-seared scallops and Braised eggplant

each time my cooking turns out successfully is such a happy occasion for me! (: it’s really a sense of accomplishment and warmth to be able to cook for the people i love ^^ and big thank you to my family who are the most supportive fans of my cooking haha. they always eat up every single morsel and never fail to sing praises of it!

haha so i did a very “fusion” dinner that night, with one western and one chinese dish. finally managed to find affordable scallops in the supermarket after trying to hunt for them the previous week! so i decided to cook this dish today ^^ my first time cooking scallops and i wanted something manageable, and this was an awesome recipe!!! so simple, and it allows the scallops to take centre-stage with a scrumptious sauce to top it off!

Pan-seared scallops
Ingredients:
1 packet of scallops
1/3 cup white wine
4 cloves of garlic, minced
3 tbsp chilled butter
a handful of thyme
salt and pepper, to taste

1. Pour one tablespoon of oil into the pan. Sprinkle salt and pepper on the scallops right before throwing them in the pan. Sear 3-5min on one side, or until browned. Flip it to the other side and sear for another 3-5min. Remove from the pan and keep them warm in the oven at around 60 dec C.
2. In the same pan, pour in the white wine and garlic. Bring it to the boil. Allow it to boil till the wine has reduced to around 2 tbsp. Add in the butter, one tablespoon at a time, until fully melted and mixed well. Stir in the thyme.
3. Pour the sauce over the scallops and serve.

okay this dish looks like a pile of mush, but i’m so proud of it!!!!!! i finally managed to do an eggplant dish that is cooked properly and tastes good :’) you have no idea how many times i’ve failed with this ingredient -.- i don’t think i’ve ever put up an eggplant recipe on my blog because it always turns out rather awfully :( it takes a really long time to soften! and i never managed to cook it long enough to get rid of the raw taste. sighs.

but…i finally did!!!! (: chinese-way of cooking eggplant has proved to work best (Y) hehe. the secret? (no secret actually) – braise it. works perfectly, and doesn’t require too much effort. i threw in a whole bunch of my other favourite ingredients so it’s really yummy ^^

Braised Eggplant
Ingredients:
1 packet of eggplant
1 packet of minced pork
1 packet of enoki mushrooms, trimmed ends, rinsed
a handful of dried shrimps, soaked
5 tbsp shaoxing wine
2 tbsp light soy sauce
5 tbsp dark soy sauce
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp black vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 dried small red hot chilis, diced

1. Trim off the stems of the eggplant. Cut into small rounds/lengthwise into rectangular pieces.
2. In a bowl, mix the wine, soy sauces, sugar and vinegar and 2/3 cup of water.
3. Drizzle 1-2 tbsp oil into a wok. When the oil is heated, add the garlic and shrimps and fry till fragrant. Add in the minced pork and fry it till it is almost fully cooked. Add the eggplant and chili and fry till it is slightly brown.
3. Pour in the sauces and stir well to make sure everything is well coated. Bring it to the boil and then reduce to a simmer. Allow it to simmer for around 10min, stirring occasionally, or until the eggplant has softened.
4. Stir in the mushrooms, bring to the boil again. Then remove from heat and serve. 

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