This air-fried eggplant and tomato are some of the dishes I love to make for my family especially when they are in season.
Are you a fan of eggplant? Personally, I love the texture and flavor so much. Eggplant is delicious and can be served in warm or cold dishes. One of the most eaten dishes with eggplant when I was a kid was stuffed eggplant. With proper seasoning and cooking methods, eggplant can be a great substitute for meat.
Today, you will see how to create a simple dish that you can enjoy as an everyday meal at home. This is one of those typical meals that doesn’t really have a name but it’s something simple that I love to make when the vegetables are in season. Oh, the tomato is from our garden too.
How to make air-fried eggplant and tomato
Prepare the sauce – as usual, I love to mix all the sauce ingredients in a bowl and add it along for video purposes. The sauce is easily customizable so feel free to add some chile for a spicy kick. You can add some sugar or adjust the salt depending on how sweet your tomato is.
Next, make the batter by whisking together the dry ingredients and water until no lumps appear. The batter should be thick enough to coat the eggplant without much dripping.
Now, prepare the vegetables: cut the tomatoes into wedges, chop green onions (white and green part separated), and garlic.
Preheat the air fryer to 390F for 3 minutes. While waiting, prepare the eggplant. Peel off the eggplant skin with a peeler and roughly chop it into bite-sized pieces. I used a roll-cut method (check my video).
Once the air fryer is heated, grease the inner rack. Then, coat the eggplant in batter, shake off excess, and place them on the rack, slightly apart.
Air fry for 3 minutes, pause, remove the rack, and brush a layer of oil on the eggplant to create a crispier top. Air fry for another 3 minutes or until golden brown. You may air fry in batches if you don’t have a large air fryer. Set them aside.
Next, heat a large wok or skillet with oil. Sauté garlic and green onion top until fragrant. Add the tomato and continue to cook until the tomato releases its juice. If you find that tomato is too hard, add some water and cook to soften them. Note: It’s important to soften the tomato to draw its juice for flavor.
Pour in the sauce and bring the mixture to a boil. Once you add in the eggplant, quickly toss to combine until all the eggplant is coated with sauce. Fold in the green onions and serve hot with a bowl of warm rice.
Air-fried eggplant with tomato FAQs
- Can I bake the eggplant? Yes of course. Preheat the oven to 425F then lay the coated eggplant on a greased lined pan. Spray or dab the top of the eggplant with a layer of oil. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown.
- If you don’t feel like coating the eggplant with batter, simply cut them as directed on the video with skin on. Soak them in a bowl of water with a teaspoon of vinegar. Drain out the water and steam the eggplant for 8-10 minutes until soft. Add the eggplant to the sauce and let it simmer until the flavors meld.
Other stir-fries recipes to try
- Fragrant ‘fish’ eggplant (Yu Xiang Qie Zi)
- Korean chili pepper and potato stir-fry
- Edamame mushrooms stir-fry
If you try this recipe, I would love to hear your feedback and see your beautiful re-creation. Leave me a comment, rate it, and tag @woon.heng and #woonheng to your photos on Instagram or Facebook. Happy cooking, friends!
Air fried eggplant with tomato
- 1 lb [455g] eggplant used Japanese eggplant
- 3 roma tomatoes
- 2 stalks of green onions
- water optional (see notes)
- cooking oil
- ½ cup [60g] rice flour
- ½ cup [60g] all-purpose flour
- ⅔ cup water
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- dash of black pepper
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon vegan oyster sauce
- ¼ teaspoon mushrooms seasoning/bouillon
- ¼ teaspoon thick dark soy sauce
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- dash of pepper
- ½ cup water
- 1½ teaspoon cornstarch
- Prepare the sauce – Whisk together the sauce ingredients in a bowl until well-combined and set it aside.
- Make the batter by whisking together all-purpose flour, rice flour, salt, pepper, and water in a bowl until no large lumps appear. The batter should be thick enough to coat the eggplant without much dripping.
- Next, prepare the vegetables. Chop the green onions and separate the white and green parts. Then, cut the tomatoes into wedges.
- Now, preheat the air fryer to 390°F (~200°C) for 3 minutes. While waiting, prepare the eggplant. Peel off the skin and cut the eggplant into bite-sized pieces using the roll-cut (roll-knife) method.
- When the air fryer is ready, grease the inner rack. Dip eggplant in the batter, shake off excess, and place them in the air fryer, slightly apart. Air fry for 3 minutes, then pause the air fryer. Remove and brush the eggplant’s top with a thin layer of oil and air fry for another 3 minutes or so until golden brown. Air fry in batches if needed.
- To cook the sauce, heat a large wok with a tablespoon of oil. Sauté garlic and green onion top until fragrant. Add the tomatoes and cook until they release their juice. If your tomato is hard, add ¼ cup water and cook to soften them.
- Add in the sauce and bring the mixture to a boil. Taste test and season accordingly.
- Once you add the eggplant, quickly toss until all the eggplant is coated with sauce. Sprinkle with green onions. Serve hot with a bowl of warm rice.
- *If your tomato is soft, you may not need the water to cook it.
- For a homemade vegan oyster sauce, please check here.