Sunday, March 15, 2015

Mushroom Manchurian

Mushrooms are rich in proteins and have high water content which aids in easy digestion and are also known to contain anti-oxidants. Manchurian is an easy and quick fix accompaniment to any Indo-Chinese meal.
M likes mushrooms only in Manchurians as they are undercover J so here is the restaurant style Mushroom Manchurian. White button mushrooms are the best choice as they have a meaty texture.
Mushrooms-200g, cleaned and halved
Onion-1, cubed
Capsicum-1 cup, cubed (I used red, green and yellow)
Spring onion/Scallions- to garnish
Garlic-4 pods, finely chopped
Soy sauce-1 tsp
Red chili Sauce-1 tsp
Tomato paste-1/2 tsp (optional)
Vinegar-1 tsp (optional)
Pepper-3/4 tsp
Red chili flakes-1/2 tsp (optional)
Ajinomoto/MSG-1 pinch (optional)
Oil- For deep frying
Salt-as needed
For Batter:
All purpose flour-2 tbsp
Cornflour-2 tbsp
Red chili powder- ¾ tsp
Baking soda- 1pinch
Salt- as needed
How It Happened:
1. Take all the ingredients given under ’for batter’ list in a mixing bowl, and mix well. Then add water little by little to make a thick batter (like pancake batter)
2. Heat oil in a pan for deep frying. Add halved mushrooms to the batter and mix well to coat each mushroom with the batter.

3. When the oil is hot add 2 or 3 pieces of mushroom and regulate the heat to medium. (Stay away from the pan as the oil tends to splutter a lot-read notes*)
4. Let it cook well on all sides and when they turn golden brown drain them and place on a kitchen tissue and repeat the process and cook the entire batch and set aside.
5. In another pan, heat 2 tbsp of oil add chopped garlic and fry until they turn glossy. Add the cubed capsicum and onions and fry until their skin blisters.

6. Add soy sauce, red chili sauce and tomato paste. Mix well and cook for 2 minutes.
7. Add vinegar, pepper powder and red chili flakes and toss well.
8. Switch off the flame, add ajinomoto, toss once garnish with spring onions and serve hot with noodles or fried rice.

* Make batter thick else they will soak up a lot of oil while frying and will turn up to be soggy instead of being crispy.
* As mushroom has high water content, once dropped in hot oil the oil tends to splutter a lot than usual so take care and stay a little away from the pan after adding. Maintain the flame in medium, once when they are cooked the spluttering and bubbling stops then you can remove them.
* Fry the mushrooms and keep ready. Toss them in the sauce just before serving else they will lose the crunch.
* Tomato paste adds nice color but you can skip it. Similarly red chili flakes add more heat and vinegar gives a nice sharp acidity but again you can skip them. Ajinomoto is also purely optional and I didn’t use it here.

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