In high school I was a bit of a nerd. I say this because I loved to read and whenever my honors English teacher assigned a book I was excited to get started on it. While most of the students in the school were complaining about assigned reading,thankfully there were many other nerdy readers in my honors English class with me.
I’ll say this about my high school honors English classes. We read a lot of good books. I still talk about The Scarlett Letter, 1984, A Wrinkle in Time, and The Joy Luck Club. It wasn’t all fun and games though. There is one book that will haunt my dreams forever. Moby Dick. I’ll be honest; while I really did hate this book, it may have also been the fact that my creepy English teacher spent a week and a half on the “Whiteness of the Whale” or the fact that one of my best friends almost drowned while reading the book because she fell asleep in her tub.
But for the most part I loved reading the assigned books and often saw the movies later on in life. So when I saw that the theme for #SundaySupper this week was movie inspired recipes I immediately thought of The Joy Luck Club. If you’ve never seen the movie or read the book, it’s a lovely story about 4 Chinese mothers and their 4 daughters. They talk about their hardships, their sorrows, and the happy times. The story is told through the different points of view of all 8 of them and the story changes depending on who is telling it. There is a sense of friendship, community, and love, all over tea, food, and a shared game of mahjong.
Thinking back on both the movie and the book, the recipe I wanted to make was eggplant in garlic sauce. It always sounded so delicious and it’s something I’ve never had before. It was very easy to make and I really enjoyed the flavors. I’ll warn you that this is a spicy dish but it’s also very good. The only thing differently I’d do next time is to peel the skin from the eggplants before cooking them.
So the next time you’re inviting friends over for mahjong, put on a pot of hot tea and make this flavorful eggplant in garlic sauce. You’ll be glad you did.
Eggplant in Garlic Sauce (adapted from Saveur)
3 medium Chinese eggplant, about 1 lb.
1 1/2 T. chili garlic sauce
3 T. soy sauce
2 T. rice vinegar
1 T. lime juice
1 T. sugar
4 T. vegetable oil
4 oz. ground pork
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 T. minced ginger
1/2 c. chopped scallions
2. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add half the eggplant and stir fry for 3 minutes. Remove the eggplant to a plate. Add an additional tablespoon of eggplant and stir fry the remaining eggplant. Remove to the plate with the other eggplant.
3. In a small bowl combine the chili garlic sauce, soy sauce, rice vinegar, lime juice, and sugar. Mix with 3/4 cup of water. Set aside.
4. Add 1 tablespoon of oil, along with the pork, garlic, and ginger, to the skillet. Heat for 2 minutes. Add the eggplant back in and stir in the chili garlic sauce.
5. Bring the mixture to a boil and reduce heat to medium. Continue cooking for 5-8 minutes or until the eggplant is tender.
6. Sprinkle with the chopped scallions and immediately serve over rice.
Check out these other movie inspired dishes from #SundaySupper:
Toast (bready things)
- Scones (inspired by Tea with Mussolini) – Country Girl in the Village
- Croque Monsieur (inspired by It’s Complicated) – That Skinny Chick Can Bake!!!
- “Eat Me” Blueberry Lemon Scones (inspired by Alice in Wonderland) – The Messy Baker
- Dog Bone Breadsticks (inspired by Frankenweenie) – The Urban Mrs.
- Individual Deep Dish Pizzas (inspired by Mystic Pizza) – Momma’s Meals
- Basic Bread Recipe (inspired by Agora) – Masala Herb
- Mystical Double Cheese Pizza (inspired by Mystic Pizza) – Webicurean
- Vanilla Cinnamon Pancakes (inspired by No Reservations) – Pies and Plots
No Reservations (soups and salads)
- 10-Minute Potato Ham Soup with Pesto Swirl (inspired by Julie & Julia) – Shockingly Delicious
- Alaska Smoked Salmon, Celery, and Apple Salad (inspired by Salmon Fishing in the Yemen) – Pescetarian Journal
Today’s Special (fish, chicken, beef, and pork)
- الدار البيضاء Fish Tajine (inspired by Casablanca) – Maroc Mama
- Beef and Onions Braised in Beer (inspired by Julie & Julia) – Magnolia Days
- Spicy Seared Tuna with Balsamic Reduction (inspired by Big Fish) – I Run For Wine
- Slow Cooker Braised Short Ribs (inspired by Brave) – Big Bear’s Wife
- Puerco Pibil (inspired by Once Upon a Time in Mexico) – From the Bookshelf
Forks Over Knives (veggie-heavy dishes and sides)
- Eggplant in Garlic Sauce (inspired by The Joy Luck Club) – Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
- Beet Chips (inspired by Food Matters) – girlichef
- Ratatouille (inspired by Ratatouille) – Noshing With The Nolands
- Mushroom and Asparagus Mini Quiches (inspired by Sixteen Candles) – Home Cooking Memories
- Veg Samosas (inspired by Monsoon Wedding) – My Cute Bride
- Not So Fried Green Tomatoes (inspired by Fried Green Tomatoes) – Mama.Mommy.Mom
- Roasted Taters with Bacon (inspired by Lord of the Rings) – Curious Cuisiniere
- Goat Cheese Basil Grits (inspired by Fried Green Tomatoes) – Diabetic Foodie
Udon (pasta and noodles)
- Big Night Timpano (inspired by Big Night) – Kimchi Mom
- Better Baked Mac & Cheese (inspired by Soul Food) – What Smells So Good?
- Spaghetti with Meatballs and Gravy (inspired by Lady and the Tramp) – Juanita’s Cocina
- Spicy Sichuan Noodles (inspired by Eat Drink Man Woman) – Food Lust People Love
- Chicken Tchoupitoulas Pasta (inspired by Last Holiday) – Gourmet Drizzles
Just Desserts (sweet treats)
- The Best Chocolate Cake (inspired by Chocolat) – The Foodie Army Wife
- Chocolate Almond Torte with Raspberries (inspired by Chocolat) – Vintage Kitchen
- Iocane-Dusted Brownies of Unusual Size (BOUS’) (inspired by The Princess Bride) – The Cooking Actress
- Minny’s Chocolate Pie (inspired by The Help) – Daily Dish Recipes
- Pao de Lo | Portuguese Bundt Sponge Cake (inspired by My Big Fat Greek Wedding) – Family Foodie
- Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Cookie Pie (inspired by Life of Pi) – No One Likes Crumbley Cookies
- Fantasia Cakes (inspired by Disney’s Fantasia) – NinjaBaking. com
- Chocolate Dipped Almond Coconut Bars (inspired by Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) – Kudos Kitchen By Renee
- (Gluten Free) Orange Soda Pound Cake (inspired by Joe Vs The Volcano) – Blueberries and Blessings
- Peach and Berry Cobbler (inspired by Soul Food) – The Lovely Pantry
- Golden Ticket Peanut Butter-Pretzel Truffles (inspired by Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory) – Weekend Gourmet
- French Macarons (inspired by Marie Antoinette) – Happy Baking Days
- Pistachio and Cherry Cannoli Cups (inspired by The Godfather) – Peanut Butter and Peppers
Bottle Shock (beverages)
- Raspberry Cordial (inspired by Anne of Green Gables) – NeighborFood
- Grapefruit Flirtini (inspired by Sex and the City) – Ruffles & Truffles
- Wines To Pair With #SundaySupper Movie-Inspired Recipes (inspired by Sideways) – ENOFYLZ Wine Blog
Join the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday, April 14th to talk all about movies that have inspired us to head into the kitchen – and the food that comes from that inspiration (7pm EST)! We’ll tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag, and include it in your tweets to join in the chat. Check out our #SundaySupper Pinterest board for more delicious recipes and food photos.