Detours by Deepali

Every now and then, go down a different path

Eats shoots and leaves

Frankly, I used to think of bamboo more like an invasive grass that you can best use in interior decor. But a main food ingredient and a hero of my next meal? Who knew !!  Until I went to this little place called ‘Bamboo Shoots’ that flaunts a catch line ‘Eat Like a Panda’ and serves all stuff in bamboo with a panache that’ll even please our cute furry beary friend.

bamboo - CopyWhile you can’t eat bamboo straight-up like pandas do, boiled, freshly sprouted bamboo shoots are absolutely delicious.  No worries if you don’t happen to have a bamboo forest in your backyard – you can buy pre-sliced and pre boiled bamboo from your local Asian supermarket.

Stir Fried Bamboo Shoots with Pork

You’ll need:

1 pound ground pork (Any protein can be used or you can omit the meat and just serve the bamboo shoots on their own)
1 tablespoon corn starch
5 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 fresh bamboo shoots, peeled and sliced
1 teaspoon minced ginger
3 tablespoons Shaoxing wine
1-2 teaspoons sugar
  1. Mix pork, cornstarch and 3 tablespoons soy sauce. Set aside.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in large pan over high heat. Add garlic and saute until fragrant. Add pork mixture.  Stir fry until no longer pink.  Remove from pan.
  3. In same pan, heat 1 tablespoon oil. Add bamboo shoots, turn heat to medium-high, and sauté for approximately 5 minutes. Add ginger, wine, 2 tablespoons soy sauce and sugar. Stir to coat bamboo.
  4. Return pork to pan. Cook together another 2 minutes or until heated through. Serve with rice and enjoy.

Wondering what can you do with the bamboo leaves? Well, wrap your Zong Zi!!

Zong Zi is sticky rice with filling encased in bamboo leaves.

You’ll need:

5 cups glutinous rice
1/2 pound dried mung beans
20 dried chestnuts
1 tablespoon salt
1/8 teaspoon Chinese five spice powder
10 dried black mushrooms, soaked with stems removed and caps sliced
20 bamboo leaves
1/2 pound pork belly, sliced
For Zong Zi filling:
  1. Soak glutinous rice, mung beans and chestnuts overnight in separate bowls. Drain.
  2. Stir-fry pork for a few minutes. Add chestnuts, 1/4 cup soy sauce, 1/4 cup rice wine, 1 teaspoon ground black pepper, 1 teaspoon of sugar, 1 star anise and 1/2 teaspoon five spice powder. Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 1 hour. Remove pork and chestnuts from stew and set aside.
  3. Stir-fry mushrooms with a little liquid from pork stew.

To wrap Zong Zi

  1. Soak bamboo leaves in warm water for 5 minutes then wash in cold water.
  2. Take 2 leaves with leaf stem or spine facing out. Overlap them lengthwise in inverse directions (pointed end of one leaf facing the rounded end of the other).
  3. Hold leaves about 2/3rds of the way along their length. Bend them to make a pouch that you cup firmly in one hand.
  4. Scoop the rice into the bamboo leaves’ pouch. Scoop the filling onto the rice.
  5. Fold leaves over the open top of zongzi, then around to side until zongzi is firmly wrapped. Zongzi should be pyramid shaped with sharp edges and pointed ends. Trim off any excess leaf with scissors.
  6. Tie up zongzi tightly just like shoes laces with a double knot. Normally they are tied to a bunch of zongzi.
  7. Boil for 1 hour, unwrap and serve.

———–

Edible, adj.:  Good to eat, and wholesome to digest, as a worm to a toad, a toad to a snake, a snake to a pig, a pig to a man, and a man to a worm.  ~Ambrose Bierce

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11 comments on “Eats shoots and leaves

  1. fgassette
    December 13, 2012

    Looks like a wonderful dish!

    BE ENCOURAGED! BE BLESSED!

  2. Min
    December 13, 2012

    Such stunning pictures and an exotic recipe! NEver made anything like this before! Thanks for sharing

    • Deepali
      December 14, 2012

      Thanks for stopping by, Min. Trying out new stuff is always fun and this one is easier than it looks :-)

  3. fgassette
    December 13, 2012

    I believe your blog deserved another star on your Blog of the Year 2012 Award, so I gladly nominate you for it. You can see it here: http://wp.me/p23TG1-1PM

    BE ENCOURAGED! BE BLESSED!

    • Deepali
      December 13, 2012

      Thanks you so much! This is wonderful and I’m truly honored to be nominated by you because I love your blog.

  4. Jennay
    December 13, 2012

    That’s awesome!! I have a huge mass of bamboo in my backyard and we are now growing it as a border on the outlines of our property to have more privacy! I never even imagined serving this up for a meal! We have made bird feeders with the bamboo and they turned out wonderful! You can see the birdfeeder here: http://adayinthelifeofjennay.wordpress.com/2012/08/27/bird-feeders/. We painted them and sold them at the local flea markets! They were super easy to make and the birds love them! Thanks for sharing!! =)

    • Deepali
      December 14, 2012

      Thanks a lot, Jennay! Loved your bird feeders. What a lovely idea! I’m sure you wud’ve sold a good many of those:-) and lucky you to have so much bamboo in the backyard. There’s so much you can do with it. Glad you stopped by!

  5. adinparadise
    December 13, 2012

    Now you tell me! :) I used to have a forest of bamboo at my last house, but we dug it all out because the roots were so invasive and were coming up through our brick driveway.

    • Deepali
      December 14, 2012

      LOL! i guess you just missed relishing many a panda meals right from your backyard ;-)

      • adinparadise
        December 14, 2012

        Yes, I’m so disappointed. :)

  6. Pingback: My Take on Chinese Comfort Food: Ground Pork and Black Mushrooms | lasesana

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This entry was posted on December 13, 2012 by in food, life, nature and tagged , .
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