Eilene does not like mushrooms. I usually make a separate dish with the mushrooms for everybody else. There are many possible ways to sauce this dish, but today I decided on oyster sauce as the base sauce and then just threw in what pleased me.
Traditional oyster sauce is actually made from oysters. Jan objects to this-she is not a Vegan, but she has vegan tendencies. Fortunately, there is a vegetarian alternative that tastes almost the same made from oyster mushrooms.
There are several base sauces you can buy at any Asian store—black bean (Douchi), chili bean (Toban djan), chili garlic, hoisin, Sichuan spicy noodle, sweet bean (Tianmianjiang) sauces, etc. Most final sauces may also contain one or more of these ingredients—black vinegar, chili oil, light and/or dark soy sauce, sesame oil, shaoxing, and fresh garlic and/or fresh ginger. While you may simply use just one of these sauces in your dish, it is far more common to combine them to make a unique blend that pleases you.
Note: I am making Asian cabbage rolls and Miriam asked for extra fresh finger in this meal’s dishes. I would normally have gone with only one tablespoon of fresh ginger.
Karl’s Oyster Mushrooms in Oyster Sauce
2 Tbs. oyster sauce, vegetarian
2 Tbs. fresh ginger, slivered
1 Tbs. chili bean sauce
1 tsp. sesame oil
2 Tbs. peanut oil
8 oz. oyster mushrooms
½ cup green onions, sliced finely
1 tsp. garlic, minced
1 Tbs. shaoxing
1. Measure the first four ingredients into a small bowl and set it aside.
Tip: It is usually a good idea to have your sauces measured and ready when you are cooking Chinese dishes. In the middle of a stir fry, you do not really have time to fuss around with measuring spoons.
2. Heat the oil in a pan or wok until shimmering.
3. Add the mushrooms, and after a quick stir to coat them with the oil, let them sit and fry for 1-2 minutes.
Tip: You want to get a good sear on the mushrooms. Knocking them about will only cause the moisture in them to escape and you will end up with steamed mushrooms.
Note: Tear any large mushrooms into smaller pieces.
4. Give the mushrooms a quick toss and continue frying for another 1-2 minutes.
Tip: Use a pair of chopsticks to turn over any mushrooms that ended up on the first side.
5. Add the green onions and stir-fry for another minute.
6. Pull the mushrooms to the sides of the pan and add the garlic to the hole in the center.
7. Saute the garlic until fragrant, about one minute.
8. Deglaze the pan with a splash of shaoxing, about a tablespoon, and stir the garlic into the mushrooms.
9. Add the sauce mixture to the pan.
10. Continue stir-frying until the sauce has thicken and coated the mushrooms, another 1-2 minutes.
11. Transfer to a bowl and serve immediately.
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