“Vegetarian dinner at home”
Yesterday was Chinese Lunar Fifteenth. We tried to keep Lunar First and Fifteenth of the month as our vegetarian days.
Since I had broccoli in the refrigerator, I just bought a packet of vegetarian mock abalone steak from the vegetarian shop along the way home from work. I remembered first seeing this mock abalone at a grocery store (which also sells vegetarian products) in Bishan wet market. Unlike those canned fried-gluten mock abalone and the one made of oyster mushrooms, this vacuum-packed vegetarian abalone steak caught my eyes by its outlook, resembling the actual seafood. It was well recommended by the seller.
This is a cooked product, I heard from the seller. Just open and reheat will do, or lightly cook it with vegetables, like I did.
Broccoli, as we knew, it has potent anti-cancer properties in it. High in vitamin C, soluble fiber and contains multiple nutrients. And, it is low-fat! Mock abalone, sort of gluten and bean product, I’m yet to understand more on its ingredients.
Calories of my veggie dish counts about 70 kcal per serving.
Considered it a healthy food with no deep frying or oily ingredients involved. I even added the mushroom which I thought was one of the good choices as vegetarian meal. The preparation time was rather short, I have it served within 15 min.
1 vegetarian mock abalone steak, thinly sliced
1 cup of broccoli florets (about 250g)
8 – 10 pieces of dried Shitake mushrooms, trimmed and soaked
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 small cup of water (about 50ml) Pinch of ground white pepper
2 tablespoon of mushroom sauce (vegetarian ‘oyster’ sauce)
1 teaspoon of cornstarch into slurry (in 2 tablespoons of water)
1 tablespoon of vegetable oil
1 tablespoon of sugar (to blanch broccoli)
1) Boil a pot of water, add sugar. Blanch the broccoli florets for 2 min. Remove and drain. Set aside.
2) Heat up a wok with oil. Set fire to high. Add garlic. Fry 15 seconds, till fragrant. Reduce fire to medium. Add broccoli florets, mushrooms, mock abalone slices and water. Stir-fry for 3 min.
3) Add vegetarian mushroom sauce and pepper, continue stir-frying for 30 seconds. Cover with lid, for 2 min.
4) Remove lid, stir in the cornstarch slurry to thicken the stock. Stir-fry for another 10 seconds. Plate up and serve.
This mock abalone certainly doesn’t taste any natural seafood flavour, but its texture is close enough to emulate the actual abalone.
Tips: To retain the bright greenish color of the vegetables, add sugar into the blanching. Please do not over-cook the vegetables in order to keep its nutrients.
* Vegetarian mushroom sauce is an alternative to replace oyster sauce in vegetarian cooking. It’s available at major supermarkets.
*Do without the chopped garlic for religious dieters.
* Price of the mock abalone was unbeatably cheap as compared to the real seafood, of course. A packet of such cost about $5.80.
^Photo updated in 2020