Wow. If you love flavor, this is the recipe for you. There’s tons of it. It comes from the vinaigrette, which has some rather interesting ingredients in it. The broccoli rabe and the portobello mushrooms add some really nice texture, but really, I think this dish is more about the flavor. If you decide to try it, I think you’ll agree.
There are a few different ways to go with this recipe. In his cookbook called What’s For Dinner, Curtis Stone calls for broccolini and portobello mushrooms, among other things. Since my local grocery store didn’t offer broccolini this past weekend, I went ahead with broccoli rabe. Now, I recognize that broccoli rabe has a tint of bitterness to it and broccolini is more mild, but I had to do what I had to do. I didn’t blanch, but I believe that blanching broccoli rabe removes any bitterness. Also, after completing the dish, I believe that regular broccoli would have worked well. I enjoy that flavor as well as the texture, so if cost or availability is an issue, that’s a good choice.
Regarding the mushroom – if I prepare this dish again, I’m going to simply use regular white button mushrooms. I didn’t see any advantage in flavor or texture by using portobello. Once again, if cost or availability is an issue, go with regular mushroom. When going ahead with recipes for this site, I try to stick as close as possible to what I find online or in cookbooks. I start getting creative with my second and third go-rounds.
Officially, this is a Chinese stir-fry dish. The use of rice vinegar and oyster sauce gives that away. Those ingredients, combined with the broccoli and mushroom give it the flavor and texture that you’re use to if you eat Chinese often. There’s some depth to this dish because there are quite a few ingredients that work well together. Things meld nicely at the end, so be patient and enjoy!
1/4 Cup Sweet Onion, Finely Chopped
1/4 Cup Rice Vinegar, Unseasoned
2 Tablespoons Oyster Sauce
1 Tablespoon Dried Thyme
2 Tablespoons Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
1 Tablespoon Regular Olive Oil
12-16 Ounces Broccolini or Broccoli Rabe, (For the broccolini – trim and halve lengthwise)
2 Large Portobello Mushrooms, Cleaned and Sliced into 1/2 Inch Pieces
6 Scallions, Trimmed and Cut into 1 Inch Pieces
1 Tablespoon Dried Ginger
3 Garlic Cloves, Minced or Crushed
2 Teaspoons Sesame Seeds, Toasted
When looking through the above ingredients, feel free to substitute. Just be sure to keep the recipe true to its intention. It’s a Chinese dish, so if you go too far, you’ll fall astray to what it’s supposed to taste like. I would suggest adjusting anything except the vinegar, oyster sauce, olive oil, ginger and garlic. Those are the ingredients that offer the most flavor.
In a small to medium sized bowl, add the 1/4 cup of chopped sweet onion, the 1/4 cup of rice vinegar, the 2 tablespoons of oyster sauce, the 1 tablespoon of dried thyme and the 2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil.
I decided to go with sweet onion as opposed to shallots for this recipe because I’ve been finding that shallots are too harsh to eat raw. Sweet onion is more mild.
Once those ingredients are in the bowl, whisk them together with a fork and set aside for later use.
In a large skillet, add the 1 tablespoon of regular olive oil. Heat to high (if you’re using cast iron, heat slowly) until the oil begins to smoke. After that, add the broccolini or broccoli rabe.
Cook and stir for only 2 minutes, or until you begin to see parts of the broccoli rabe begin to brown. Be sure to not overcook at this point. Don’t worry, there’s more cooking to come.
In the meantime, scrape the brown parts from the portobello mushrooms and slice them into 1/2 inch pieces.
Once ready, add the sliced portobello mushrooms to the skillet. Cook for 3 minutes, mixing often.
At this point, you can add most of the remaining ingredients. Go ahead and stir in the 6 cut scallions, the 1 tablespoon of dried ginger, the 3 minced garlic cloves and the vinaigrette mixture. Cook and stir for another 3 minutes. After that, stir in the 2 teaspoons of toasted sesame seeds.
When those 3 minutes have passed and all the vegetables have softened, remove the skillet from the heat, divide the ingredients into four servings and plate.
The color of the broccolini or broccoli rabe in the final dish depends on how long it’s cooked. This is why I mentioned that timing is important. If it’s overcooked, things will begin to wilt and brown too much.
This is the final dish. Since it’s only Laura and me, we divided the stir-fry in half. It sure was good.
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