(Almost) Less Than 5: Sautéed Eggplant with Miso


Sauted Eggplant with Miso

Many years ago, my fridge (or especially freezer) looked like a morgue.  No more. Ever since I started Kitchen Wizard, my kitchen is a lot more organized and that has helped me decide what to cook much quicker, and also reduced waste significantly.

They all have the labels with dates and contents, I know exactly what I need to use up soon, and for what.

Today, that item was grilled eggplant.  As some of you older readers remember, I posted a series of eggplant recipes over the summer. Throwing eggplants on the grill whether we plan to eat on that night or not, along side our chicken and sausages is a must for us, because they are one of the most convenient and versatile thing to have on hand. As the day gets colder and shorter, we don’t grill out much, but they are still handy in fall and winter too – for different dishes.

So I decided to make an easy Japanese dish that can be made with pantry items.  This really is a cinch if you already have grilled or sautéed eggplants (ideally cooked in vegetable oil, not olive oil). Obviously, grilled eggplants are healthier – it uses much less oil and salt.  You can also stick the whole eggplants in the toaster oven until soft. You can use a conventional oven too, yet a toaster oven heats much quicker (doesn’t require pre-heating), plus uses much less energy.

If you are vegetarian/vegan, omit the meat or chopped shiitake mushrooms as substitute.

Sautéed Eggplant with Miso

Ingredients (2-3 servings):

  • Ginger, sliced: about 1 ts
  • Green onions, chopped: about 3
  • Crushed chili (optional)
  • Japanese, Chinese or Italian Eggplants: (ideally already grilled) 5-6
    • This is a cinch if you have already grilled or sautéed eggplants. Cut in bite size pieces. You do not need to peel skin for this dish.
  • Ground meat: 4oz (100g)
  • Sake: 2 TBS (sprinkle 1 TBS on the meat, mix 1 TBS into miso to create paste.)
  • Soy sauce: 1 ts
  • Sugar: pinch
  • Miso: 1 – 2 TBS


  1. Heat oil in a skillet. Cook sliced ginger and green onions (and chili, if you are using) on medium-high heat until fragrant. (If you don’t have cooked eggplants, add oil and sauté sliced eggplants. Add a little bit of salt to shorten the cooking time).  When soft, move toward the edge of the pan.
  2. If you have the cooked eggplants, add to the onion ginger mixture. Add ground meat and any sake residue, and cook until brown.
  3. Add soy sauce and pinch of sugar, and mix in the miso/sake mixture. Taste and adjust seasoning.  Serve hot with steamed rice.

Kitchen Wizard Leftover Make-Over Tip:

If there’s any left over, add hot water and miso and make eggplant and ground meat miso soup.  Add extra green onion on top.

This is a kind of dish they serve at Izakaya as well as at home in Japan…  So maybe you should have some beer or sake with this, and pretend that you are in Japan!


4 thoughts on “(Almost) Less Than 5: Sautéed Eggplant with Miso

  1. This is an awesome recipe! I’m always looking for ways to use miso outside of the regular soup recipes, and this is a great one.

    Question: I always have left over vegetables that I prepared but didn’t use for either tempura or stir fry. Would this recipe work with other veggies, like carrots, brocoli or squash?

    • Hey Doug, thank you for your comment!
      Yes… definitely, especially with broccoli and squash. Just experiment with whatever veggies you have. The trick is, not to use too much. Miso also goes really well with cheeses, cream, soy milk you can steam/boil/microwave these veggies really quick and mix with miso cream and bake it w/cheese, or make some miso dip for healthier snack. BTW, have you made miso flavored suiton (Japanese flour dumpling & vegetable stew) before? It’s really great in winter! Leave me a comment know if you want the recipe.

  2. Definitely want the recipe. I’m looking to get back into healthy eating once I’m back home and away from all the good Japanese food out here!

  3. Hey Doug,
    Here’s the suiton recipe you asked.

    Saute various cubed veggies you’d put in miso soup, such as carrots, onion/grren onion, potatoes, pumpkin, cabbage, abura-age (<- highly recommended to add flavor to vegetarian dishes). Add dashi & water to cover. When veggies are crisp tender, using a spoon, drop dumplings made of flour, water & a bit of sesame oil to the consistency of your earlobe in boiling broth, cook till almost done, and add miso at the end, just like miso soup. (You can season w/ soy sauce for no-miso version too.)

    *Make only the amount of dumplings you will be eating on that day. Leftover dumplings in soup tends to make the soup very thick.

    I'm in Milwaukee now w/o JP food for a wk. This will be something I'm making in as soon as I go home in Jan!

    Happy New Year!

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