Buddha's Delight

Lo Hon Chai

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Traditionally eaten by Buddhist monks, this vegetarian stew also known asLuóhàn zhāi is becoming more popular worldwide.

Let's start cooking!

Sliced mushrooms, bean curd, tofu puffs on a chopping board

Step 1 - Prepare the dry ingredients

  • Soak bean curd stick, bean thread noodles and dried shiitake mushrooms in cold water overnight or hot water for at least 2 hours then drain.
  • Squeeze dry mushrooms and reserve mushroom water.
  • Rinse mushrooms, bean curd stick and bean thread noodles under cold running water.
  • For the mushrooms, squeeze out excess water and slice thinly.
  • Using scissors, cut bean curd into 1-inch pieces, then into half length-wise, tofu puffs into small triangles and the bundle of noodles in half.
Buddha's Delight does not have a fixed recipe. Though the above ingredients are commonly used, some variations use a wider variety of vegetables, including carrots, broccoli, and fresh mushrooms along with other soybean and wheat-based components

Step 2 - Mix the sauce

  • In a bowl, add ¼ cup reserved mushroom liquid, minced garlic, 1 tsp sesame oil, 1 tsp kecap manis, 1 Tbsp soy sauce, and 1 tsp cornstarch.
  • Mix well and set aside.
Blanch napa cabbage and baby bok choy

Step 3 - Blanch the vegetables

  • Bring a wok of salted water to a boil over high heat.
  • Add napa cabbage and baby bok choy and cook until crisp-tender, about 1 minute. Drain and rinse under cold running water until chilled. Pat dry.
Stir-frying vegetables and adding bean thread noodle

Step 4 - Stir-fry Buddha’s Delight

  • In a wok or non-stick skillet, heat oil until lightly smoking. Add chai pow yu, mushrooms, tofu puffs, and bean curd stick. Season with salt and stir-fry until mushrooms are golden brown, it takes about 4 minutes.
  • Add vegetables and stir-fry for 1 -2 minutes until tender.
  • Add bean thread noodles to the middle of the wok and cook, tossing and stirring, for 1 minute.
  • Stir sauce and pour into wok. Cook for about 3 minutes, stirring to coat ingredients, until sauce thickens and the noodles and tofu puffs have absorbed some of it.

Plate and Serve!

Cabbage, mushroom,bean curd stick, tofu puff and bean thread noodle on a plate

Serve hot with rice.

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