Chinese Black Fungus Salad Recipe: Revitalize Your Plate with Healthy – Seaco Online
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Chinese Black Fungus Salad Recipe: Revitalize Your Plate with Healthy Indulgence

Black fungus salad is an excellent choice for those seeking a refreshing Chinese appetizer that's easy to make. Also known as wood ear mushroom salad, this dish is not very well-known outside of China, but it's a popular choice among locals. The wood ear mushrooms have a slightly crunchy texture and are paired with a spicy soy sauce and rice vinegar dressing, making it a perfect appetizer to start your meal.

A bowl of Chinese black fungus salad, with sliced fungus, shredded carrots, and sesame seeds, dressed in a tangy vinaigrette

When selecting ingredients for your black fungus salad, be sure to choose fresh and high-quality ingredients. You can also add seafood to the recipe for an extra boost of flavour. Shrimp, squid or scallops are excellent choices that pair well with the wood ear mushrooms and dressing.

To prepare the dish, soak the black fungus in room temperature water until they have tripled or quadrupled in size. While the fungus is soaking, prepare the dressing by mixing together garlic, fresh red chili peppers, Chinese black vinegar, light soy sauce, sugar, and sesame oil. Finally, add the wood ear mushrooms to the dressing and mix well. Serve chilled for a refreshing appetizer that's sure to impress your guests.

Key Takeaways

  • Black fungus salad is a refreshing and easy-to-make Chinese appetizer.
  • Choose fresh and high-quality ingredients and consider adding seafood for an extra boost of flavour.
  • Soak the black fungus, prepare the dressing, and mix in the wood ear mushrooms for a delicious and refreshing salad.

Selecting Ingredients

A hand reaches for fresh black fungus, ginger, and soy sauce on a kitchen counter, ready to prepare a Chinese salad

When it comes to making a delicious Chinese black fungus salad, selecting the right ingredients is key. In this section, we'll cover everything you need to know about choosing the best quality black fungus, complementary vegetables, and dressing essentials.

Choosing Quality Black Fungus

Black fungus, also known as wood ear, is the star of the show in this salad. When selecting black fungus, it's important to look for pieces that are plump, with a slightly crunchy texture. Avoid any pieces that look slimy or have a strange odour.

If possible, try to get cloud ear fungus, which is more delicate and does not have a white back to the fungus. Soak the black fungus in room temperature water for about 20 minutes or until they tripled or quadrupled in size.

Complementary Vegetables

While black fungus is the main ingredient in this salad, complementary vegetables can add a pop of colour and flavour. Cucumber, garlic, spring onion, and cilantro are all great options to consider.

If you're feeling adventurous, you could even add some seafood to your salad. Cooked prawns or squid would pair well with the crunchy texture of the black fungus.

Dressing Essentials

The dressing is what brings all the ingredients together in this salad. A simple mixture of sesame oil, soy sauce, and vinegar is a classic option, but you can also add some chilli or red chilli if you like a bit of spice.

When making the dressing, be sure to mix the ingredients well and taste as you go. Adjust the seasoning to suit your taste preferences.

Selecting quality ingredients is crucial when making a tasty black fungus salad. Choose plump and slightly crunchy black fungus, complement with colourful vegetables, and mix a well-balanced dressing to bring it all together.

Preparation Techniques

A table with various ingredients laid out: black fungus, soy sauce, vinegar, sesame oil, sugar, and chili. A knife and cutting board for slicing and mixing

Preparing black fungus salad is a simple process that involves soaking and rehydrating the wood ears and cutting or tearing them into small pieces. Here are some techniques to follow for perfect results.

Soaking and Rehydrating

Before using black fungus in your salad, you need to soak it in warm water to rehydrate it. Soaking helps to remove any dirt or impurities that may be present in the fungus. To soak the fungus, place it in a bowl of warm water and let it sit for about 20 minutes until it triples or quadruples in size.

Once the fungus is rehydrated, rinse it thoroughly under running water to remove any remaining dirt or impurities. You can now proceed to cut or tear the fungus into small pieces to use in your salad.

Cutting and Tearing

After rehydrating the black fungus, you can either cut or tear it into small pieces. Cutting is ideal if you want uniform pieces of fungus for your salad, while tearing is perfect if you want a more rustic look and texture.

To cut the fungus, use a sharp knife to slice it into thin strips or small pieces. If you prefer tearing, simply tear the fungus into small pieces using your hands.

To add a seafood twist to your black fungus salad, you can add some cooked shrimp or crab meat. The seafood will add a unique flavour and texture to the salad.

Cooking Process

Slicing black fungus. Soaking in water. Boiling. Draining. Mixing with sesame oil, soy sauce, vinegar, and sugar. Garnishing with sesame seeds and green onions

Boiling Black Fungus

To start, you will need to prepare the black fungus by soaking it in water for about 20 minutes until it triples or quadruples in size. After soaking, rinse the black fungus thoroughly to remove any dirt or impurities. Then, bring a pot of water to a boil and add the black fungus. Boil the black fungus for 5-10 minutes until it becomes tender but still retains its crunchiness.

Mixing the Salad

Once the black fungus is cooked, drain it and let it cool down. While waiting, prepare the salad dressing by mixing together garlic, fresh red chili peppers, Chinese black vinegar, light soy sauce, sugar, and sesame oil. Adjust the taste of the dressing according to your preference. Feel free to add seafood such as prawns or squid to the salad for added flavour and texture.

Next, mix the cooled black fungus with the salad dressing in a large bowl. Add chopped spring onions, cilantro, and sliced red chili to the bowl and mix everything together well. You can also add some sliced cucumber or carrot to the salad to add more crunchiness and colour. Finally, serve the black fungus salad as a refreshing side dish with your favourite main course.

This black fungus salad recipe is easy to make and is a great way to enjoy the unique taste and texture of black fungus. The salad is crunchy, refreshing, and packed with flavour, making it a perfect side dish for any occasion.

Flavouring and Seasoning

A hand pours soy sauce over sliced black fungus in a bowl. Sesame oil and vinegar are added, then mixed with chopsticks

Creating the Dressing

The dressing is the heart of the Chinese black fungus salad recipe. It is what gives the dish its unique flavour. To create the dressing, you will need to mix together soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame oil, sugar, and salt. The combination of these ingredients will give the dressing a tangy and slightly sweet flavour.

You can also add oyster sauce to the dressing to enhance the umami flavour. If you prefer your salad to be spicy, you can add some chilli flakes or chopped chillies to the dressing. The amount of chilli you add will depend on your personal taste.

Balancing Flavours

When creating the dressing, it is important to balance the flavours. You don't want the dressing to be too sweet, too salty, or too sour. To achieve a well-balanced flavour, you can adjust the amount of sugar, salt, and vinegar in the dressing.

Light soy sauce can also be added to the dressing to give it a more complex flavour. This type of soy sauce is saltier and lighter in colour than regular soy sauce. It is often used in Chinese cooking to add depth of flavour to dishes.

If you want to add seafood to the salad, you can use cooked shrimp or crab meat. These seafood options will complement the flavours of the dressing and the black fungus. Be sure to use fresh seafood and cook it properly before adding it to the salad.

The dressing is what makes the Chinese black fungus salad recipe unique and delicious. By balancing the flavours and adding your own personal touch, you can create a salad that is perfect for any occasion.

Serving and Presentation

A bowl of Chinese black fungus salad is elegantly arranged with fresh vegetables and drizzled with a savory dressing, ready to be served

Garnishing

For an extra touch of flavour and presentation, you can garnish your Black Fungus Salad with some chopped coriander, spring onions or toasted sesame seeds. Not only does this add to the visual appeal of the dish, but it also enhances the taste and texture of the salad.

Chilling and Serving

Black Fungus Salad is best served chilled, making it a perfect appetizer for hot summer days. Once you have prepared the salad, cover it with cling film and place it in the fridge for at least an hour. This will allow the salad to absorb the dressing and chill, resulting in a refreshing and crunchy texture.

When it's time to serve, you can either portion the salad into individual bowls or serve it family-style in a larger dish. You can also add some seafood to the salad to make it more substantial. Shrimp or crab meat would be a great addition to this dish, providing a burst of flavour that complements the earthy taste of the black fungus.

It's worth noting that Black Fungus Salad is a low-calorie appetizer, making it a healthy option for those watching their weight. With only around 60 calories per serving, it's a guilt-free dish that you can enjoy without worrying about your waistline.

Frequently Asked Questions

A bowl of Chinese black fungus salad surrounded by ingredients and a recipe card

What's the simplest way to make a Chinese black fungus salad?

The simplest way to make a Chinese black fungus salad is to first soak the black fungus in water until it becomes soft and pliable. Then, rinse it thoroughly and chop it into thin strips. Next, add some sliced cucumber, coriander, and a dressing made with rice vinegar, soy sauce, and sesame oil. Mix everything together and serve chilled.

How can I tell if wood ear mushrooms are safe to eat?

When buying wood ear mushrooms, look for those that are dry, with no signs of mould or slime. They should also have a slightly sweet, earthy aroma. If you're not sure, you can soak them in water for about 20 minutes before using them. If they have an unpleasant smell or texture after soaking, discard them.

What are the health benefits of consuming Chinese black fungus?

Chinese black fungus is rich in dietary fibre, protein, and antioxidants. It is also low in calories and fat. Consuming black fungus can help regulate blood sugar levels, lower cholesterol, and improve digestion. It is also believed to have anti-inflammatory and anti-tumour properties.

Is it possible to prepare black fungus the night before using it in a dish?

Yes, you can prepare black fungus the night before using it in a dish. After soaking and rinsing the fungus, chop it into thin strips and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It should keep for up to 24 hours.

What's the proper method to get black fungus ready for cooking?

To prepare black fungus for cooking, soak it in water for about 20 minutes until it becomes soft and pliable. Rinse it thoroughly to remove any dirt or debris. Then, trim off the tough stem and chop the fungus into thin strips or bite-sized pieces, depending on the recipe.

Can you suggest a good substitute for black fungus in a salad recipe?

If you can't find black fungus, you can use other types of mushrooms such as shiitake or oyster mushrooms. Alternatively, you can add some seafood to your salad, such as cooked prawns or squid, to give it a similar texture and flavour.