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Sunday, 18 January 2015

Braised Sea Cucumber With Assorted Mushroom 杂菇焖海参

My boy can finish his bowl of rice with just this! 

Braised Sea Cucumber...I don't use the traditional method. I have my short cut to use ready chicken broth. However, I cannot shorten the cooking time because these sea cucumber are a little stubborn. Took me 2 hours to braise until it's tender. But it's good in quality I think because they stay in shape, tender and springy in texture. Well, I'm not an expert in choosing sea cucumber, so I can't really tell how to choose a nice sea cucumber. :)

This is how the fresh sea cucumber looks like..

1 Sea Cucumber (about 180g)

Wash to clean... In a pot, bring water to boil. Add a stalk of spring onion and 3 slices of ginger. Add in sea cucumber, cook for 1 minute. Drain, discard everything except sea cucumber. :) This step is to get rid of any fishy smell from the sea cucumber.

4 slices of Ginger
2 cloves of Garlic
3 Dried Scallops (Soaked to softened, reserved water) 
2 King Oyster Mushroom (sliced) - optional
4 Shitake Mushroom 
(fresh or dried, I used fresh one this time. If using dried shitake, soak the mushroom to softened and reserve the water)

1 Cup Chicken Broth 
1 Cup Water

Optional: for final coating, mix all ingredients in a bowl.
1 tbsp Oyster Sauce
1/2 tsp Sugar 
1 tsp Corn Starch 
1 tbsp Water 

Some oil for cooking
Some Spring Onion for garnishing

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1. Heat oil in a skillet, add in ginger, garlic and scallops. Fry until fragrant.

2. Add in sea cucumber. Stir fry for 1 minute.

3. Add in mushrooms, fry for 1 minute or until there's no more sizzling sound.

4. Add chicken broth, water and the reserved water used to soak scallops and mushroom if using. Bring to boil. Transfer to a cooking pot. Continue to simmer until the sea cucumber is tender. The cooking time is depends on the hardness of the sea cucumber. Mine took about 2 hours this time. 

5. When the sea cucumber is ready, stir in the 'coating' ingredients, cook for a minute. Add spring onion and serve warm.

Tips: You can use a cooking pot to stir fry the ingredients, it's optional to stir fry in a skillet. I used my cast iron skillet because I like the stir fry aroma... :)

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