A dish I cooked and first published back in 2016 when my older daughter, Sam, decided to go vegetarian. She isn’t one anymore (she still doesn’t eat mammals though) but this dish is just so good I’ve kept it in my repertoire.
What inspired this recipe? When Sam asked if I could cook beef with broccoli but with mushrooms instead of beef, I didn’t have to ask her to elaborate. I knew exactly what she meant — a stir fry with tender-crisp broccoli florets smothered with a sauce thickened with starch.
It was one of Sam’s favorite Chinese dishes before she turned vegetarian. So, I obliged her. And I decided to make her even happier by using two mushroom varieties — meaty and earthy button mushrooms, and the more flavorful and texture-rich shiitake.
To add even more depth to the vegan stir fried mushrooms and broccoli, I took extra time and effort with the aromatics. I cooked the shallots over medium-low heat until caramelized before adding the garlic. I sautéed the shallots and garlic together for another minute and, when the fragrance filled the kitchen, I added the rest of the ingredients. Finally, the sauce mixed with starch was poured in.
Mushrooms and Broccoli Stir Fry
- 4 to 6 button mushrooms
- 4 to 6 shiitake mushrooms caps only
- 2 to 3 shallots
- 4 cloves garlic
- 2 tablespoons cooking oil
- 2 cups broccoli florets
- cracked black pepper
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon vegetarian oyster sauce (available in Asian groceries)
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon tapioca starch or corn or potato starch
- ¼ teaspoon sesame seed oil
- toasted sesame seeds to garnish (optional)
- Slice the mushrooms. Not too thin. About a quarter inch thick is just fine.
- Peel and roughly chop the shallots.
- Peel, pound and mince the garlic.
- Heat the cooking oil in a wok or frying pan.
- Over medium-low heat, sweat the chopped shallots until softened.
- Add the garlic and sauté for about a minute.
- Turn up the heat to high.
- Add the mushrooms. Sprinkle with pepper. Stir fry for a minute.
- Add the broccoli florets. Stir fry for another minute.
- Mix together the soy sauce, vegetarian oyster sauce, sugar, starch and sesame seed oil with half a cup of water and pour into the pan. Stir quickly.
- Continue cooking for another minute or just until the sauce is thickened and the broccoli florets are done but still with lots of crisp in them.
- Optionally, sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds.
- Serve at once.