Traditional Shanghai style stir-fried rice cake is made with pork and napa cabbage. It’s very easy to make it into vegan style by replacing pork with more vegetable. The vegetable I used today were napa cabbage, bamboo shoots, spinach and bean sprouts. I meant to add shitake mushroom as well but forgot. You can pretty much add any vegetable you want to this dish: carrot, zucchini, onion, mushroom, etc.
Maybe not everyone is familiar with Asian ingredients. So I am going to talk about the ingredients I used for a bit.
1. Rice Cake (年糕)
Rice cake is used widely in Asian cuisine. There are many different types of rice cake in various shapes. For this dish, you want to buy the round sliced rice cake. You can get either the Korean one like the one I bought, or Chinese Shanghai rice cake (上海寧波年糕). Rice cake will come either frozen or in the refrigerated section. If you buy the frozen kind, it needs to be defrosted, then soak in water for a bit.
2. Bamboo Shoot (筍絲)
It’s hard to find fresh bamboo shoot in the US. And if you do find some, they are really expensive. I usually just get the canned one. I bought the pre-sliced bamboo shoot strips.
3. Dark Soy Sauce (老抽)
Dark Soy Sauce, just like its name, is darker than regular soy sauce. It is also a little thicker. It is used to give food a beautiful caramel color. The taste is just the same as regular soy sauce. This is an optional item. If you don’t have Dark Soy Sauce, just use regular soy sauce. The food might not come out looking as dark as mine, but will be just as tasty.
4. Chili Bean Paste (豆瓣醬)
Chili Bean Paste is spicy and salty. It will give this dish that extra “kick”. It is made with fermented soy beans.
Now we are ready to cook!
Shanghai Style Stir-Fried Rice Cake (上海炒年糕)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 teaspoon of minced ginger
1/2 head of napa cabbage, sliced
1 cup bamboo shoot, sliced
3 cups sliced rice cake (1/2 package)
3 tablespoon soy sauce
1/2 tablespoon dark soy sauce (optional)
2 teaspoon chili bean paste
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 bunch of spinach
1 cup bean sprout
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
Heat the oil in a large wok or skillet over high heat. Add the garlic and ginger. Cook for about 1 minute.
Add napa cabbage and bamboo shoot. Cook until the vegetable is wilted.
Add rice cake. The cabbage will give out water, which can be used to cook the rice cake. If it is too dry, add more water. Cook the rice cake until it is soften.
Add soy sauce, dark soy sauce (if using), bean paste and sugar. Cook until everything is mixed well.
Add spinach and bean sprout. These two vegetables cook fast so we add them at the end.
Cook until the spinach is wilted. Add sesame oil and mix well.
Get some chopsticks and enjoy!