When growing up in San Francisco there was not a more festive holiday than Chinese New Year. The sidewalks of Market Street would be lined with thousands of people on a usual cold, damp and foggy evening in February to watch the colorful and loud parade. And then there was the star of the parade. The flowing dragon who was both lead and followed by dancers tossing firecrackers to ward off any evil spells. Now, as an adult and away from San Francisco, I still like to celebrate Chinese New Year with the difference being, I do it with food!
If you want proof that vegan and vegetarian dishes can be just downright delicious, this dish from Malaysia is your proof. Here you have the slight crunch of bamboo shoots and the tender texture of mushrooms lightly braised in a sauce which exemplifies the exotic tastes of Asia. This is often used as a side dish in many restaurants, however with some steamed bread this can be a meal in itself.
Now if you're not versed in Asian cuisine, you might be wondering where to buy bamboo shoots. Any market which has an Asian section sells bamboo shoots. They come in a can (like a tuna can) and the ingredients should only state bamboo and water. They come sliced, so need for any work on your part with that. As far as the mushrooms are concerned, you can use whatever fresh mushroom you like best, but I would not use portobello mushrooms as the taste of that mushroom might overpower the bamboo shoots.
Ingredients needed to make Braised Bamboo Shoots (serves 4 as a side dish):
- ¼ cup corn oil
- 1 cup sliced mushrooms
- 3 cups bamboo shoots, rinsed
- 3 Tbs. soy sauce
- ¼ cup water
- 2 Tbs. sugar
- 1 tsp. grated ginger
- 1 Tbs. dry sherry
- In a medium sauté pan or skillet heat the oil over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and bamboo shoots and sauté 5 minutes.
- Stir in the remaining ingredients, cover and cook 15 minutes before serving.
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