Sister Grace stopped by this Sunday. Of the several options I gave her for dinner was spicy chicken and pan fried noodles. While this dish is a lot of work, it is one of my family’s favorite meals.
While this is a one dish meal, in Chinese culture—where we lived for several years—it is appropriate to honor a guest with several dished. I decided I nneded to make some more dishes. I made a mushroom side dish and some smashed pickles as an hor d’oeuvrea.
Daughter Eilene does not like mushrooms, so I usually make a separate dish with the mushrooms for everybody else. Daughter Miriam is starting to get better from her problem with onions. She gave me permission to make my dishes normally, rather than making separate onion, garlic free versions for her.
I have made mushrooms with oyster sauce before but I cannot seem to make dishes like this the same way twice. Traditional oyster sauce is actually made from oysters. For Vegans there is a vegetarian alternative that tastes almost the same as the original made from oyster mushrooms.
Karl’s Oyster Mushrooms in Oyster Sauce II
2 Tbs. oyster sauce (for Vegan use the vegetarian sauce)
1 Tbs. chili garlic sauce
2 tsp. dark soy sauce
1 Tbs. shaoxing rice wine
1 tsp. dark sesame oil
2 Tbs. fresh ginger, slivered
8 oz. oyster mushrooms
6 green onions
3 cloves garlic, sliced
2 Tbs. peanut oil
1. Measure the sauce 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. Tear any large mushrooms into bite sized pieces.
Tip: A single package of oyster mushrooms may come in widely varying sized—from ½ inch mini mushrooms to 4 inch wide fans. Try to tear the mushrooms into similar sized pieces.
3. Cut the white parts of the green onions into 1 inch pieces.
4. Slice the green parts finely and keep them separately from the white parts.
5. Heat the oil in a pan or wok until shimmering.
6. 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.
7. Give the mushrooms a quick toss and add the white parts of the green onions.
Tip: Again do not stir the vegetables too much.
Note: Use a pair of chopsticks to turn over any mushrooms that ended up on the first side.
8. Continue frying for another 2-3 minutes, until the onions are starting to pick up some color.
9. Pull the mushrooms to the sides of the pan and add the garlic to the hole in the center.
10. Saute the garlic until fragrant, about one minute.
11. Deglaze the pan with the sauce and stir the garlic into the mushrooms.
12. Continue stir-frying until the sauce has thicken and coated the mushrooms, another 1-2 minutes.
13. Add most of the green parts of the onions and stir-fry for 30 seconds to mix them in.
14. Transfer to a bowl and garnish with the remaining green onions.
15. Serve immediately.