As I mentioned in my last post, I was in Vancouver last week. While there were many awesome things about visiting, one of the things that I forgot (or repressed?) was how many restaurants I love in that city. I only lived in Vancouver for about two years, and for a good chunk of that time, I knew I was leaving. I find that I approach a city in a completely different way when I know I am there for a limited period of time. We just didn’t put off things that we wanted to do in or around the city and that included trying a bunch of different restaurants. Instead of having a few ‘go-to’ places we tried new ones pretty often.
So, we definitely couldn’t manage fitting in all of the places that we love into our 6 day visit. We had some amazing Chinese (Peaceful Noodle- check it out!) and Japanese food (QQ sushi- dirt cheap and so delicious) while we were there, but we couldn’t fit in a Malaysian restaurant that I love called Banana Leaf. Just before we moved to Vancouver we visited Malaysia. We loved the food there (especially the roti canai, oh man, so good), so we were on the hunt for a good Malaysian restaurant when we moved to Vancouver. The noodle dishes at Banana Leaf tasted just like what we got in Malaysia (just 10 times more expensive) but there was one vegetable dish that I always went back to.
The dish was an sambal okra, green bean and eggplant dish. On multiple occasions, I gave up the opportunity to eat noodles or curry filled with delicious seafood for this plate of veggies. Eaten with some plain or coconut rice, it was totally addictive. My favourite part of it was the charred effect of the vegetables. As always, I never thought to recreate it at home until now. As we didn’t get a chance to go to the restaurant, the dish has been on my mind.
I think that the sauce is absolutely on point. It can be used to marinate all sorts of things if you’re not into eggplant or green beans (think tofu or fish?). I tried to cook it both in a searing hot pan and an oven. Both turned out well. Basically, do whatever you think is easiest for you but I guess I would choose the oven method: in the oven, the sambal had a stronger flavour after cooked. I will definitely be enjoying this with some rice and some protein like tofu or shrimp.
This recipe will make double the amount of sambal sauce that you need. I suggest cooking the eggplant and green beans in half of it and reserving the other half to serve with the dish (spooned over the rice and vegetables).
Preheat oven to 450F (on broil).
Mix together all of the ingredients for the sambal sauce.
Cut the eggplant in half lengthwise. Score the eggplant down the middle (cut it but not all of the way through to let some of the marinade and heat penetrate better).
Generously coat the flesh side of the eggplant with one quarter of the sambal sauce and toss another quarter with the green beans.
On a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil, place the eggplant flesh side up and the green beans in an even layer.
Bake for 25 minutes until the vegetables are cooked through and starting to blacken.
Dice eggplant into 1 inch cubes.
Serve with extra sambal sauce on rice with some tofu, shrimp or fish.
Sambal Green beans and eggplant Recipe was last modified: November 22, 2013 by