This Spring picture recipe instructable is for Black Fungus – a popular Chinese side dish/salad. Specialist Asian ingredients can be hard to come by in the country but Lisa at This Little Piggy Asian Market in Castlemaine has it pretty well stitched for anything you might need to make this dish. In fact, she is so awesome that she ordered some Black Fungus in for me! So the least I can do is share the recipe. Pop in and say “Hi” to Lisa – preferrably at lunch time so you can try some of her delicious food.
Why Black Fungus?
So, many of you are probably thinking something along the lines of, “that sounds horrible, how can you possibly suggest we eat it?”. But just give it a crack because it really is utterly delicious, even though it looks kind of weird. Sometimes Black Fungus is referred to as “Cloud Fungus”, possibly due to its similarity to heavy and foreboding storm clouds as it grows on the trees during deep Winter and very early Spring. As you can see, it looks completely surreal and has a really unique texture – kind of crunchy & rubbery and takes a bit of getting used to but the flavour is amazing and it has a whole stack of awesome things going for it healthwise:
1. It’s delicious and keeps for ages in the cupboard. It’s quick to prepare and makes for an interesting dinner party talking point.
2. It’s part of the Chinese dietary therapy tradition (shí liáo 食疗 ) and is a regular part of Chinese meals.
3. In TCM terms, it supports the Kidney Yin without being sticky enough to create Damp and damage the digestion.
4. One of its TCM functions is to move and tonify Liver Blood. For this reason it’s probably not recommended in pregnancy or in situations where there is excessive bleeding, unless advised by a practitioner.
5. It’s great for people with a TCM diagnosis of Liver Blood or Kidney Yin Deficiency. Best speak with an experienced and registered practitioner to find out if it suits you.
The key to the amazing flavours in this dish is balance – and you will strike your own balance as you adapt to the different combinations that go together to make up this delicious dish.
If you’re into making visually beautiful and fresh, deliciously interesting flavoured dishes, give it a go! Click through to the step-by-step guide and recipe here:
If you want to find out what foods are applied to your constitutional type from a TCM perspective, as well as looking after your health the Asian way, why not book a consultation ?