Saturday, May 9, 2009

Vegetarian Chap Chye

It's Vesak Day today. I made a big pot of vegetarian chap chye to eat throughout the day. Seriously though, I have no issues eating chap chye with rice all day long, simply because it's so savoury and soupy. That's all thanks to the magic ingredient, nam yee (red fermented beancurd).

I learnt to make this dish from my mother-in-law. She takes the extra effort to fry the ingredients individually before dumping them in one big pot. She says it enhances the taste. But if you prefer not to, it's OK too. Just throw all the ingredients in and simmer till it's one big dee-licious mess!

Vegetarian Chap Chye
- Wong bok or chinese cabbage (or have them both!)
- 2 or 3 cubes of nam yee (depending on how big a pot you're cooking)
- 1 can of button mushrooms
- 1 packet enoki mushrooms
- A handful of dried mushrooms (soaked and sliced)
- A handful of black moss
- A handful of wolfberries
- A handful of dried woodear fungus (soaked)
- A handful of gingko nuts (buy pre-peeled if you want to make life easy)
- 3 tbsp of vegetarian oyster sauce
- 1 soup bowl of water (or more, if you want it more soupy, but remember, the cabbages add to the liquid content as they soften and cook)

1. In a pot, over a medium heat, fry your nam yee with some oil. Mash up the cubes as you fry. Add in the oyster sauce.

2. Lower the heat. Throw in all your ingredients except the cabbage and black moss. Try and coat all the ingredients with nam yee. Use some of the nam yee liquid from the jar.

3. Now add in your cabbage, black moss and water. Cover and simmer over a very low heat.

4. Cook for about 30 minutes until the cabbage is soft.

In the event that you want it more salty, just add a little more vegetarian oyster sauce + nam yee cubes. All up to your preferences, really.

Just look at that scrummy black moss!


  1. Sul tuo blog scopro sempre notizie e ricette interessanti ; scusami cos'è il Yee nam ?
    E' simile al nostro dado vegetariano?
    Grazie per la tua disponibilità e cortesia,
    un abbraccio Daniela.

  2. Ciao Daniela, I am not sure if it is the same as your dice vegetarian, but Nam Yee is made from fermented beancurd :)

  3. I put some 腐竹 (fuzhu - dried bean-curd skin rolls) in it this year, and it was delicious. Thanks again for putting up this recipe, and happy New Year.