Tuesday, February 16, 2010

A traditional CNY vegetarian dish

This is my late mother's recipe for a wonderful vegetarian dish. She used to cook it only once a year - on the first day of CNY. Since her passing, we have continued with this family tradition and have unfailingly cooked this on the first day, year after year.

The ingredients are many. Here is the list..

1. Gingko nuts (銀杏)

2. Kam chum (金针) or lily buds, soaked and knotted.

3. Water chestnuts - cut in small pieces

4. Fatt choy (发菜) or dried black moss, soaked and pressed in balls so as not to mess up the dish when cooked.

5. Lotus root, cut into thin slices.

6. Canned button mushroom - quartered.

7. Vegetarian oyster (optional)

8. Black fungus or wan yee (云耳), soaked and cut into bite pieces.

9. Mien kan (面筋)....

.....soaked in hot water till soft.

10. Chinese cabbage - leaves and stems separated.

11. Bean curd skin or fu-pei (腐皮).... 

... deep fried to a nice crisp like so.

12. Chinese mushroom, soaked and halved....

... and sauteed with garlic till cooked.

13. A mixture of fermented beancurds - fu yee (乳) and lam yee (南乳)

The fermented beancurds are mixed to a paste and fried in a wok with oil and garlic till aromatic.

The veges are then progressively put into the wok and stir fried with the fermented beancurds mixture; in the following order: 
- Chinese cabbage (stems only)
- lotus roots
- water chestnut
- gingko nuts
- vegetarian oyster
- kam chum
- mein kan
- button mushroom
- black moss fungus 
- the sauteed Chinese mushroom.  


At this stage vegetarian oyster sauce and thick soy sauce are added in to taste. Add some water and continue to stir and simmer.

The deep fried fu-pei are next into the wok...

.... followed by the leaves of the Chinese cabbage.
Last in the wok is the fatt choy balls.

Add in more water. Cover the wok and simmer for a few minutes.

Continue to stir and cook until the gravy is dried up and the vegetables are soft. The final outcome is a delightful array of colours in the wok. A wonderful delicious vegetarian dish.


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