Last Friday, in attempt to eat something healthier than fish and chips for tea, I decided to rustle up a vegetarian stir fry with a little help from my local Tesco supermarket. This followed the discovery of a £3 deal on the component parts a week before and a strange hoisin, stir fry and baked salmon combo.

I don’t eat fish on Friday for religious reasons by the way. The only reason Siggy and I have fish and chips regularly is that it is an easy thing to cook after a hard week at work. But I’ve been told by a medical professional to eat less bad fat and also that I need to lose a bit of weight. In lieu of any real exercise, I have decided to think a little more carefully about what I put down my gullet (curries aside) and make more of an effort to cook proper food even if it is almost spoon fed to my by the ideas people at Tesco.

So this time around, instead of the salmon (a very good source of Omega 3 if you’ve been living under a rock and didn’t know that already), I went for mushrooms and instead of hoisin, black bean sauce. In hindsight I realise that I bought far too many mushrooms.

The hand picked Asian selection consisted of shimeji, eryngii (the biggest ones) and enoki (the long thin white ones) varieties. They came from Korea so while this might have been a healthy vegetarian meal, the carbon footprint isn’t ideal. However, the shiitake mushrooms were grown in the UK and the chestnut mushrooms came from Ireland so it’s not all bad.

The asian selection and shiitake mushrooms needed rinsing first and the enoki needed separating. The shiitake looked rather manky and felt a little slimy to the touch. So they went into the pre-heated wok first with a decent amount of olive oil to kill off any lingering bacteria.

Another reason Shiitake go into the wok first and were sliced nice and thin is that I know they are tough, then the chestnut mushrooms go in and then the others (which I crossed my fingers about because I had no knowledge of how best to cook them). Then I lobbed in the stirfry vegetables and noodles and sauce. It was a simple as possible because I am slowly easing myself back into this cooking business.


As usual with mushrooms I’m thinking I’ve filled the pan but course they’ll reduce down right? Right? Well not as much as I wanted and so there’s not mushroom for the other ingredients (sorry I had to slip that pun in somewhere).

I opt for half a bag of the vegetables due to the lack of space in the wok. I then stirfry for a good 10 min- I’m not a huge fan of undercooked stirfry. Noodles go in after 5min. Sauce for a couple of minutes prior to dishing up.

I stirred continuously to make sure everything is coated with the pungent sauce and in fact the sauce all but disappeared due to the vast combined surface area of all the ingredients.

The result: a steaming hot stir fry with noodles (veg+noodles+sauce=£3)

Some of the mushrooms had a taste and texture rather like seafood and we couldn’t really taste the sauce. Also the stir fry vegetables included a lot of horrible cabbage which was tough as shami leather and not at all enjoyable to eat. The disappearing sauce had me reaching for my ‘go to’ ingredient if a stir fry seems lacking and that is, drum roll…

Henderson’s Relish to the rescue!

Frankly this was mushroom overload. I’ll stick to the chestnut mushrooms from now on. I needed twice as much sauce and half as many mushrooms. Did I feel healthy eating it though? Hell yeah!

Then it was time for pudding and as far as I’m concerned strawberry trifle is good fat! Shaddup in yer face…