Recently, I found these huge king oyster mushrooms at the grocery store. They’re similar to the Trumpet Royale™ variety used in the King Oyster Mushroom Salad but humongous. Humongous! They’re not just a little bigger, they’re a lot bigger.
If you saw them in the store, you would be a little frighten. They look like mushrooms on steroids with their thick, meaty white stems and their tiny tan caps (they’re not really on steroids, that’s just how they are). But they taste oh so good.
They’re the largest species in the oyster mushroom genus, Pleurotus. When cooked, they have a texture similar to that of abalone, which is probably why they’re also known as almond abalone mushrooms. In the stir-fry, crisp snow peas provide an excellent contrast to the soft mushrooms.
I also used another ingredient you might not have heard of – salted turnips. They’re not usually served in dishes at Chinese restaurants as they’re considered more for home cooking.
Found only at the Asian grocery store, they provide additional flavor and texture to the dish. It’s a little bit crunchy and even though it’s preserved in salt, it has a sweet flavor. But if you can’t find it or if you don’t feel like putting in some weird new ingredient you’ve never seen before in your life, you can leave it out. It’s not a recipe breaker.
King Oyster Mushrooms With Snow Peas
Serves 2 as part of a meal
1 pound snow peas
1-2 large king oyster mushroom
2-3 pieces salted turnip, rinsed off
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
Wash and trim the snow peas. Slice the salted turnip crosswise at a diagonal. Wash the mushrooms and slice into 1/8″ rounds on the diagonal.
In a wok, heat until hot and then add 1 teaspoon of the oil. Add the mushrooms and salt to taste, sauté until slightly wilted and the mushrooms have changed to a smooth texture, about 3 minutes. Remove and set aside.
Heat the wok again, add the remaining oil, salted turnips and snow peas. Stir and then cover for 30 seconds. Add salt to taste and a splash of water if the wok appears to be too dry. Cover until snow peas are cooked. They should be crisp yet tender, about 2 1/2 minutes, stirring and checking a few times. When snow peas are cooked, return the mushrooms to the wok, stirring to mix for a few seconds. Plate and serve.