Braised Stuffed Shiitake Mushrooms (红烧香菇酿 Hong Shao Xiang Gu Niang)
February 12, 2022  Print
I made these Braised Stuffed Shiitake Mushrooms during this year’s Chinese New Year (CNY) celebration. Just like Stuffed Cucumbers, which I covered in an earlier post, they look super fancy but are actually quite easy to make. This recipe is also quite versatile. If you don’t like using ground pork, you can stuff the mushrooms with ground chicken, shrimp paste, or tofu instead.
The vegetables are optional and can also be changed. If you have guests over, I recommend including the vegetables to add more color and contrast. But you can definitely skip this step for a regular meal.
I first sear the stuffed shiitake mushrooms then braise them with low heat for a short time until the meat stuffed inside the mushrooms is cooked through. The stock absorbs plenty of umami from both the shiitake mushrooms and the stuffing, becoming super flavorful.
This recipe does require more preparation time, but cooking takes less than 10 minutes. It’s great for a dinner party. You can prepare ahead of time and spend less time cooking and more time entertaining your guests.
Preparation Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 2 – 4 people
- 1/2 lb fresh shiitake mushrooms (about 10) 1
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup water2
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon light soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon dark soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon starch water (mix 1 tablespoon corn or tapioca starch with 3 tablespoons water)
- 0.3 lb ground pork3
- 1 green onion (minced)
- 1 teaspoon Chinese Shaoxing cooking wine
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt (or 1/8 teaspoon table salt)
- 1/4 teaspoon light soy sauce
- 1/4 teaspoon dark soy sauce
- 1/4 teaspoon sugar
- 3 tablespoons water
- 1 tablespoon starch water (mixing 1 tablespoon corn or tapioca starch with 3 tablespoons water)
- Any green (for color contrast) leafy vegetable that has a mild taste and requires little cooking time, such as Shanghai baby bok choy, snow pea tips, napa cabbage, or spinach.
- In a small bowl, add the 0.3 lb of ground pork3 and the rest of the ingredients under “meat mix” except the starch water. This includes the minced green onions, 1 teaspoon of Chinese Shoaoxing cooking wine, 1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt, 1/4 teaspoon of light soy sauce, 1/4 teaspoon of dark soy sauce, 1/4 teaspoon of sugar, and 3 tablespoons of water, mixing well. Then mix in 1 tablespoon of starch water. Let the mixing marinate for at least 10 minutes on the counter.
- While waiting for the mix to marinate, prepare the shiitake mushrooms and vegetables (optional). Gently remove any surface dirt on the mushrooms using a damp paper towel. Use a knife or kitchen scissors to cut off the stems from the mushrooms.
- Optional: If using vegetables, heat a pot of water under medium-high heat. When water boils, add the vegetables and a few drops of vegetable oil. With lid open, blanch the vegetables in boiling water for 3 minutes. Then immediately shock the vegetables in cold water and drain well. Transfer the vegetables onto a flat plate and spread into one layer.
- With the shiitake mushroom cap’s inner side up, use a small spoon to scoop out a small ball of meat mix and stuff it into the inner cap. Use a hand or a small knife to gently press and spread the mix, covering the entire top (as depicted). Seal the edge and form a slight arch on top. Repeat this step to stuff all the shiitake mushrooms.
- Heat an 8 inch nonstick pan under medium heat. When the pan is warm, add the 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil, spreading it around a bit. Then with meat side down, add the stuffed shiitake mushrooms one by one into the nonstick pan. Sear the stuffed mushrooms until there is a thin, hard layer forming on the meat mix’s surface; about 1 minute.
- Gently flip the mushrooms so that the meat side is up. Then add 1/2 cup of water,2 1/2 teaspoon of sugar, 1 teaspoon of light soy sauce, and 1 teaspoon of dark soy sauce, and mix well. When the liquid boils, lower the heat to medium-low and cover the lid. Let the stuffed mushrooms simmer in the liquid for 5 minutes. Transfer the shiitake mushrooms onto the bed of vegetables (if using) from step 3 or a flat plate. Leave the liquid in the pot.
- Turn the heat up to medium. Add 1 to 2 teaspoons of starch water (stir the starch water before adding) to thicken the stock a bit. Then pour the stock onto the stuffed shiitake mushrooms. Enjoy!
- You can also use dried shiitake mushrooms for this recipe. I prefer using fresh ones as fresh ones are more plump and it also saves a lot of preparation time. If using dried ones, make sure to soften them completely which can take up to 2 hours in warm or hot water.
- You can also use low-sodium stock (chicken or pork bone) or the water from soaking dried shiitake mushrooms if using dried ones. If using low-sodium stock, reduce the light soy sauce to 1/2 teaspoon.
- You can also use ground chicken or shrimp paste for this recipe. For a vegetarian version, use tofu instead. Mash the tofu into a mush first.
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