For the eggplant, cut in half and then further into quarters. Layer paper towels on a heat resistant bowl and put the eggplant. Loosely cover with plastic wrap and microwave for 7 minutes at 500 W.
Pour vegetable oil in a pan and fry the ground pork well. (Fry it until the grease becomes transparent.)
Add ginger, garlic, doubajiang, tianmianjiang and Japanese leek then fry (the spicy bean paste burns easily so reduce the heat to medium).
Add the eggplant from Step 1, the ● ingredients (mix together first before adding), pepper and cook for about 5 minutes.
Add the mixed ★ ingredients a little at a time to thicken the sauce. Cook over high heat for a little while. Pour sesame oil around the edge of the pan.
Dish it up in a plate and sprinkle with chopped young scallions.
Story Behind this Recipe
I used this mapo tofu recipe (Recipe ID: 520231) and added eggplant because it was in season.
Microwaving the eggplant before cooking it reduces the amount of oil necessary so the taste doesn't become too greasy. Placing paper towels underneath the eggplant also prevent it from becoming too watery. Add more doubanjiang if you want a spicier kick.