I had bookmarked this dish when I first flicked through my copy of Bosh! (the now iconic plant based cookbook from Henry Firth and Ian Theasby). It looked like so much fun, and easy to make. If you have a copy, turn to page 183 to see the beautiful photograph of this delicious starter.
I have a large collection of spices, but I cannot remember ever using Chinese Five Spice before. I am so glad I tried it, because it is so very delicious. I shall look out for opportunities to use it in the future. Hoi Sin sauce has always been a favourite of mine, and I cannot imagine anything more delicious. The matchsticks of cucumber and spring onion are the perfect balance for the rich sticky spicy mushrooms.
I just wish that Chinese pancakes were a little bigger! You cannot pile on too much filling into these super thin pancakes. This dish is a wonderfully tasty light lunch – hard to beat for a summer treat.
- 2tsp vegetable oil
- 300g portobello mushrooms, roughly sliced
- 2tbsp soy sauce
- 1tsp five-spice powder
- 1tbsp rice vinegar
- 2tsp sesame oil
- 1tsp sugar
- half a cucumber
- 3 spring onions
- 5tbsp hoi sin sauce
- 8 Chinese pancakes
Heat the oil in a frying pan on a medium heat. Add the sliced mushrooms and cook for ten minutes until their juices have cooked off. Add the soy sauce, five-spice powder, rice vinegar, sesame oil and sugar. Continue cooking, stirring continuously until any additional sauce has mostly evapourated and the mushrooms are glazed.
Meanwhile, slice the cucumber half into two haves. With a spoon, remove the watery seeds. Finely slice the remaining cucumber into matchsticks around 6cm in length. Trim the spring onions and finely slice into matchsticks. Put the cucumber and spring onions onto a serving plate. Put the hoi sin sauce into a small serving bowl.
When the mushrooms are ready, transfer them to a serving plate. Then comes the fun as diners assemble their pancakes by taking a little of each ingredient and wrapping them up in the Chinese pancakes. If your household is anything like ours, it will all have vanished within five minutes!