In China, ba (eight) is a lucky number because it sounds like the word fa, which means "to become wealthy." For this eight-ingredient dish, Han Feng stir-fries three types of mushrooms with scallions, green chile, bean sprouts, tofu and apple, then seasons the dish with softened tea leaves.
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1 long, thin green chile, split lengthwise, seeded and thinly sliced crosswise
Salt and freshly ground pepper
4 scallions, thinly sliced crosswise
1 small Granny Smith apple—peeled, cored and sliced 1/8 inch thick
One 14-ounce can whole straw mushrooms, drained and rinsed
8 ounces firm tofu, sliced 1/3 inch thick and cut into 1-inch strips
1 cup mung bean sprouts (3 ounces)
How to Make It
In a cup, pour the 1 tablespoon of boiling water over the tea; let steep for 5 minutes. Strain the tea, reserving the leaves.
In a small, heatproof bowl, soak the wood ears in the remaining 1/2 cup of boiling water until softened, about 5 minutes. Drain well. Cut off any hard bits; slice the wood ears into thin strips.
Set a wok or large skillet over high heat for 3 minutes. Add the oil and when it begins to smoke, add the shiitake mushrooms and chile and season with salt and pepper. Stir-fry until the chile is browned, about 2 minutes. Add the scallions and apple and stir-fry until the apple is almost tender, about 2 minutes. Add the wood ears and straw mushrooms and stir-fry until sizzling, about 2 minutes. Add the tofu and the tea leaves and stir gently until sizzling, about 2 minutes longer. Season with salt and pepper and remove from the heat. Fold in the bean sprouts. Mound the vegetables on small plates and serve.
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