07 December 2009

Moo Shu

Moo Shu is one of my favorite take-out Chinese dishes. The crunchy cabbage, hoisin sauce and rice wrapper always seem to hit the spot. This is an easy homemade version, one where you can easily control the salt and fat and leave out the MSG altogether. Don't worry about getting the ingredient amounts exactly right- a bit more or less or any of the veggies won't hurt. This recipes cooks in about 10 minutes so it's very helpful to have all your ingredients lined up and ready to go, mise en place style- this way you won't be frantically searching for the ginger root while attempting to stir a skillet full of shredded cabbage. This recipe includes chicken but it would be just as tasty if you left it out.

I served the Moo Shu with store-bought hoisin sauce (is it even possible to make hoisin sauce at home?) and corn tortillas, since I couldn't find rice pancakes. It satisfied my Chinese craving and was cheaper and healthier than ordering in. Recipe after the jump.

Moo Shu with Chicken
Adapted from the Weight Watchers Cookbook
Serves 6

4 T low-sodium soy sauce (2T for vegetarian)
4 cloves garlic, minced (2 cloves for vegetarian)
1 T minced ginger root
1/2 lb (250g) chicken breast or tenders, cut into bite sized pieces (optional)
1 small head of green cabbage
1 T neutral flavored oil such as canola
1 carrot, shredded
1/2 C straw mushrooms
1/2 C bamboo shoots, drained and chopped
chili paste to taste
hoisin sauce and tortillas to serve

- If you are using chicken. Make a quick marinade for the chicken: combine 2T soy sauce, half of the minced garlic and the chicken in a dish or resealable plastic bag. If you have the time, let it marinate in the fridge for an hour, if you don't, let it sit on the counter while you prepare the rest of the ingredients. Combine the remaining 2 T soy sauce, garlic and ginger in a small bowl.

- Remove the out leaves of the cabbage and wash. Carefully cut the cabbage in half then remove the stem by making two cuts at a 45 degree angle on either side of it, aiming and inch or two into the cabbage, depending on how big the stem looks. Cut each cabbage half in half again, then slice lengthwise, creating long, thin cabbage strips. Set aside.

- Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a very large skillet (I used a 12in). Drain the marinade from the chicken. Once the oil begins to shimmer, add the chicken and stir-fry until chicken is cooked, 2-3 minutes. Remove chicken.

- Add all the vegetables to the skillet and stir to coat with oil. Cook, stirring often, until cabbage just starts to wilt, about 4-5 minutes, then add the chicken, the soy sauce mix and the chili oil. Stir to combine .

- Serve the Moo Shu with hot tortillas or pancakes. Let your guests make their own wrapper by spreading on a bit of hoisin sauce and more chili paste if they dare, then topping it with the Moo Shu mix.


kat said...

I just realized I haven't had moo shu since I left San Francisco over 2 years ago! I guess its time to try making it.

Q. said...

My roommate introduced me to Moo Shu chicken and I LOVE IT now. I crave the stuff all the time but I don't give in b/c I know it must be SO bad for me! I am so trying your version here!