A facebook friend has come up with a brilliant challenge for folks to share meals we create with fares procured from our pretty damned righteous wee Wednesday farmer’s market (we have two…it’s complicated). At first, I was very excited because I love to love that kind of thing (you know, people making delicious food with local products), then I was a bit bummed because my work life makes getting to the market pretty difficult for me, but then I was excited again because my daughter has Wednesday mornings off mostly so she can hit up the market and is not averse to being mama’s personal shopper.
We devised a plan for a fun project out of this, but that won’t start until next week.
This week, however, I ended up with some accidental bok choi – because boy – and shiitake mushrooms – because daughter heard mushrooms and bought some, even though they weren’t on the list.
All good by me.
An excuse to make this dish.
You could replace the Sichuan pepper in this dish with regular black pepper or ever chili flakes, but don’t. Please. There’s something about that tongue-numbing carvone shared by the bok choi and Sichuan pepper, complemented by the earthiness of shiitake mushrooms that makes this dish so special. Also, Sichuan pepper is not spicy hot like other peppers. It has its own unique flavour and a big bag of it is just $2.50 at Mihn’s, so I’m not sure why it isn’t in your pantry yet.
Ok. Enough condescending from me. This recipe makes 2-3 meal-sized portions served over noodles or rice, and about four sides.
What you need:
- 2 tbsp soya sauce
- 1.5 tbsp Sichuan pepper, lightly ground
- 2 tbsp fresh ginger, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp rice vinegar
- 1 tbsp honey or maple syrup
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 3 garlic cloves, pressed
- 3 tbsp water
- 2 tsp corn starch
- 2 tbsp cooking oil
- 3 shallots or 1 onion,
- 10 oz shiitake mushrooms, washed and stems removed (do put them in your stock bag!)
- 3 cups bok choi, chopped into bite-sized pieces
- Cooked noodles or rice to serve over (optional)
What you do:
- Whisk the soya sauce, Sichuan pepper, ginger, vinegar, honey or maple syrup, garlic, water and corn starch together in a bowl to make your sauce and set aside.
- In a wok over medium-high, heat the cooking oil, then add the shallots/onions.
- Cook, stirring occasionally, until the shallots/onions just begin to brown, then add the mushrooms.
- Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms just begin to brown, then add the bok choi and the sauce.
- Continue to cook, stirring often, until everything is hot.
- Serve over noodles or rice with a sprinkling of more Sichuan pepper and black sesame seeds.