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Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew)


  • Author: Maggie Zhu
  • Prep Time: 2 hours
  • Cook Time: 15 mins
  • Total Time: 2 hours 15 mins
  • Yield: 6 - 8 1x
  • Category: Side
  • Cuisine: Chinese

Description

The prep time includes marinating time. If you are creating your own version of Buddha’s Delight, please refer to the notes in the post above. Be careful, when you pick your own ingredients, try not to exceed the total volume of veggies given in this recipe.


Ingredients

Seasonings

  • 1 and 1/2 tablespoons peanut oil (or vegetable oil)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped green onion
  • 2 slices ginger
  • 3 tablespoons light soy sauce
  • (Optional) 1 teaspoon dark soy sauce
  • (Optional) 1 teaspoon sugar (*see footnote)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup re-hydrating water from the lily flower and dried mushrooms (or vegetable stock)
  • (Optional) 1 teaspoon sesame oil

Instructions

Two hours before cooking

  1. Rinse dried lily flowers with tap water. Place in a medium sized bowl and pour boiling water on top. Mix well and let rehydrate for 2 hours (up to overnight). After 1 hour, mix the lily flowers again, to make sure all flowers are soaked in water. After lily flowers turn soft, snip the tough ends by hand, and cut in half lengthwise. Drain and set aside. Save the re-hydrating water for later use.
    Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com
  2. Rinse shiitake mushrooms with tap water. Add to a small bowl and cover with tap water. Let sit for 2 hours, until the mushrooms turn soft. Gently squeeze the water from the mushrooms and transfer them to a plate. Save the re-hydrating water for later use.
    Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com
  3. Add dried wood ear mushroom in a small bowl and warm water to cover. Let sit for 2 hours, until the wood ear mushrooms turn soft. Gently rinse with tap water and drain. Cut into bite size.
    Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com

Thirty minutes before cooking

  1. Use a knife to slice each fried gluten ball, so it absorbs water faster. Place all the gluten balls in a large bowl and add water to cover. Place a cover (or a plate) on top of the bowl, so the gluten balls will be submerged in water. After 20 minutes, stir and mix with water again, to make sure all the gluten balls are soaked in water. After all the balls turn soft, squeeze water out and set aside. Discard the soaking water.
    Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.comBuddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com
  2. Chop vegetables and prepare the seasonings.
    Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com
  3. Place bean threads noodles in a bowl and add warm water to cover. Let sit for 5 minutes, until the noodles turn soft. Drain and set aside.
    Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com

To cook the stew

  1. Heat oil in a wok over medium high heat (or high heat on an electric stove). When oil is warm, add ginger and green onion. Stir a few times until fragrant. Add carrot. Stir and cook for 1 minute.
    Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com
  2. Add lily flowers and dried shiitake mushrooms. Stir and cook for 1 minute.
  3. Add bamboo shoots and wood ear mushrooms. Stir and cook for 1 minute.
    Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com
  4. Add fried gluten balls and fresh mushrooms. Stir and cook for 1 minute. Add light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, and sugar. Stir to mix well. Pour about 1 cup of re-hydrating water from the lily flowers and dried mushrooms (or alternatively, vegetable stock).
    Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com
  5. Add bok choy and stir a few times. Add napa cabbage. Stir to mix a few times. Cover and let cook over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes, until the vegetables are cooked through.
    Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com
  6. Add salt and mix well. Taste the vegetable and add more salt to adjust seasoning if necessary.
    Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com
  7. Add bean thread noodles and let them soak in the liquid. Stir and cook for another 30 seconds until the liquid is almost absorbed (or alternatively, use cornstarch water to thicken sauce – more information in the post above).
    Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com Buddha’s Delight (Jai, Chinese Vegetarian Stew) Cooking Process | omnivorecookbook.com
  8. Stop heat. Drizzle with sesame oil and stir to mix well.
  9. Serve warm over white rice.
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