Microwave Eggplant with Scallion-Chile Crisp Oil

This microwave eggplant recipe from Andrea Nguyen requires none of the usual fuss of salting and straining the nightshade beforehand. Cooking a whole eggplant in the microwave effortlessly, evenly, and quickly cooks its flesh to soft, silky tenderness while preserving its antioxidant-rich skin. Cut into thick slices and drizzled with generous spoonfuls of flavorful sauce, microwave eggplant is an easy and delicious side dish that comes together in 20 minutes flat. Just be sure to poke holes all over the eggplant before microwaving it to prevent it from exploding. 

Eggplant with Scallion Oil
Photo: Photo by Antonis Achilleos / Prop Styling by Christina Daley / Food Styling by Ali Ramee
Active Time:
10 mins
Total Time:
20 mins
Servings:
4

Ingredients

  • 1 medium eggplant (about 1 pound 2 ounces)

  • 1 large scallion, trimmed

  • 2.50 tablespoons neutral-flavored cooking oil, such as grapeseed oil

  • 2 tablespoons chile crisp, stirred before measuring

  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce

  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

  • Fine sea salt, to taste

Directions

  1. Peel off and trim pointed flaps of eggplant stem, leaving remaining stem intact. Using a fork, pierce eggplant all over 12 to 16 times. Place eggplant on a microwavable plate. Microwave on high until eggplant is soft, slightly deflated, and cooked through, about 6 minutes. Pierce the thickest portion of eggplant with a knife; if eggplant is not softened, microwave an additional 60 seconds. Let eggplant stand at room temperature until cool enough to handle, about 5 minutes.

  2. Thinly slice scallion, separating dark green parts from white and light green parts. Set scallion aside. Combine oil and chile crisp in a small microwavable bowl, and microwave on high until hot, about 1 minute and 30 seconds. Add fish sauce and garlic; let stand until garlic softens (garlic will immediately sizzle), about 10 seconds. Stir in white and light green parts of scallion. Set sauce aside.

  3. Trim stem end of eggplant, and cut eggplant in half lengthwise. Cut each half lengthwise into 1/2-inch-thick slices; transfer to a serving plate, and top with sauce. Season with salt to taste. Sprinkle with dark green parts of scallion.

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