This is definitely a one-of-a-kind dish! Although this salad made with wood ear mushrooms may not look appetizing at first glance, you can find it on almost every Chinese menu.
Until recently, I wouldn’t have dared to post this recipe for Wood Ear Mushroom Salad because so few people outside of Asia are familiar with this obscure item. Even though we’ve been sneaking wood ears into several of our best-selling dishes for the past few years (such Moo Shu Pork, Moo Shu Chicken, and Chicken with Garlic Sauce), we’re finally going all-in with this tasty appetizer.
I regularly snack on wood ears because they are delicious. The wood ear is the star of my Braised Chicken with Mushrooms. The wood ear mushroom has a mild flavor, but it has a distinctive and enjoyable crunch when eaten raw.
In any season, this wood ear dish will be a welcome addition to your table. It’s simple to make and, thanks to its tangy taste and crunchy texture, may be rather refreshing on hot days. It’s also easy to make it your own by adding your favorite spices and seasonings, such as a pinch of Sichuan peppercorn oil or a drizzle of our Homemade Chili Oil.
- 3 cloves of garlic (finely chopped)
- 1-2 fresh deseeded red chili peppers (chopped, optional)
- 4 cups of rehydrated wood ears
- 1½ tablespoons of Chinese black vinegar
- 1 tablespoon of light soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon of finely chopped scallions
- 1 teaspoon of sugar
- 1 teaspoon of sesame oil
- Wood ears should be cooked for 3-4 minutes in rapidly heating water in a medium-sized pot. To fully cool them, drain and rinse them under cold running water. Put it somewhere and open the drains to get rid of the surplus water. One alternative is to use a salad spinner to remove the extra moisture.
- In a big bowl, blend the sugar with the garlic, peppers, vinegar, light soy sauce, sugar, and sesame oil. Then, stir in the wood ear pieces.
- Marinate for 30 minutes in the fridge, covered. As the sauce tends to sink to the bottom, you should give the whole thing a good toss once more before serving.
- Put it on a plate and sprinkle some chopped onion or cilantro.