Wood ear mushrooms salad

This may be an odd dish for you if you are from outside Asia! I have struggled for a while wondering if I should share this recipe… or any wood ear mushroom recipes for that matter.

However, for me, wood ear mushrooms are super tasty, rich in fibre, and high in iron. Unusually they also contain a decent amount of vitamin B-2 (which you can see more details of here). They are totally underrated in the West and I would love to introduce them to more people. So, if you are brave and open to trying something new from another side of the world, keep reading!

The wood ear mushrooms are weird-looking, you might even find them unappealing and hard to take the first bite. However, if you love oriental food, you may actually have eaten them many times without even noticing. Yes, just like the bamboo shoot, they are everywhere!!! They may be hidden within a dumpling, chow mein, spring rolls, or any stir-fry.

The flavour is very mild, but the texture is interesting. Nothing from the West pops into my mind as having the same texture. It is soft but crunchy, velvety but chewy at the same time – odd, right? 🙃

Wood ear mushroom salad

You can easily get dried wood ear mushrooms in any oriental grocery store, the pack usually looks like this.

Soak the dried wood ear mushrooms in boiling water for around 5-10 minutes until they expand and turn completely soft.

If you are on a raw diet, you can soak the wood ear mushrooms in cold water, but this takes at least 8 hours, so it might best to prepare them overnight.

Wood ear mushroom salad

Meanwhile, you can prepare the vegetables.

Cut the carrot into thin juliennes, or you can save yourself a few minutes of cutting work if you have a spiraliser (lazy me 😌)

Wood ear mushroom salad

You need about 1/4 – 1/3 of spring onion. Shred it into really thin strips, roughly 2-3mm wide and 4-5cm long.

Wood ear mushroom salad

Now the wood ear mushrooms should be soft and ready to use. Pick them up and examine each piece, removing the hard stems if necessary.

Wood ear mushroom salad

Make sure to wash the wood ear mushrooms with ice-cold water as sometimes they can be sandy. Shake out any excess water through a sieve and set aside.

Wood ear mushrooms salad

Add the sauce ingredients, wood ear mushrooms, spring onion and carrot into a mixing bowl and toss well.

Wood ear mushrooms salad

Ideally, the salad should be cooled in the refrigerator for 20–30 minutes before serving, but it is not essential.

Wood ear mushrooms salad

Wood ear mushrooms come in a dried package. They are super easy to store and I always have a pack in my cupboard ready so I can just soak them anytime I want. I love these mushrooms and cook and eat them ALL the time… This is my first wood ear mushrooms recipe that I have shared – more are definitely coming! Please like and follow me if you are interested in trying some unusual ingredients and recipes from the East.

This recipe was created for Veahero, a cool new (free!) meal planning platform for vegans and vegetarians.

If you have followed and made this recipe, let me know! Leave a comment and take a picture, tagging it with #k33_kitchen and share it on Instagram! I’d be very excited to see what you come up with. Cheers, hope you enjoy my recipes! <3 <3

Wood ear mushrooms salad
Wood ear mushrooms salad

Difficulty: Easy

Serves: 2

Prep.: 10 mins | Cook: 5 mins

Ingredients:

Main

  • 15g dried wood ear mushrooms
  • 1/2 small carrot, julienned
  • 1/2 spring onion, shredded

Sauce

  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp ginger, minced
  • 1/2 tsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp light soy sauce*
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • Pinch of roasted sesame seeds
  • Chilli oil (optional)
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Instructions:
  1. Soak the dried wood ear mushrooms in boiling water for around 5-10 minutes until they expand and turn completely soft.**
  2. Examine each piece, removing the hard stems if necessary.
  3. Wash them ice-cold water and shake out any excess water through a sieve, then set aside.
  4. Add the sauce ingredients, wood ear mushrooms, spring onion and carrot into a mixing bowl and toss well.
  5. Ideally, the salad should be cooled in the refrigerator for 20–30 minutes before serving, but it is not essential.

* Regular soy sauce is made with fermented wheat. Use gluten-free soy sauce if you are gluten intolerant. For a raw diet, you can replace the regular soy sauce with nama shoyu.

** If you are on a raw diet, you can soak the wood ear mushrooms in cold water, but it takes at least 8 hours, so it might be best to prepare them overnight.

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