On Tuesday, Hank and I went outside of our comfort zone and made braised eggplant with tofu and garlic sauce, a recipe with lots of ingredients, some of which we had never even encountered before (so, of course, we just skipped/substituted those :D).
We don’t have a bamboo steamer, so we used what I like to call the UFO. Clicking on the link will explain to you why I call it this. The eggplant took a bit longer to steam than it said it would, but no big deal. The sauce was easy to make, but here were our substitutions: we used chardonnay (because that is what we had on the wine rack and who wants to buy wine to cook with when the rest of the bottle won’t be any fun to consume) instead of the Shaoxing wine or dry sherry. We also used rice wine vinegar instead of Chinkiang vinegar, which they said was okay. Fermented broad bean chili paste required a trip to the Asian grocery store which was just not going to happen, so we used sambal. Same thing goes for the mustard root, but we just skipped that all together. I asked Hank if we could just put some yellow mustard in, but he gave me this look.
Hank said that he felt like he was eating at a Chinese restaurant. It was pretty darn good and made for loads and loads of leftovers.