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Mustard-forward Chinese dishes


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9 hours ago, haresfur said:

@liuzhou Do you get mustard greens in China? I randomly picked up a bunch at my Chinese green grocer here. Of course it was when my very different looking mustard greens were going gangbusters in the garden. 

 

Yes. as I've said, that is the only way we get mustard. It is a very common green vegetable - usually  stir fried with garlic. Often pickled, too.

 

236917145_mustardgreens.thumb.jpg.08ffe1f8b3a2546bf5ce25666fdd5d7e.jpg

 

Also, very popular in clam and green mustard soup.

 

1280463251_ClamandMustardGreenSoup2.thumb.jpg.e53cbd6fcbda2bb58dd53c3c03b279af.jpg

 

 

 

Edited by liuzhou (log)
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6 hours ago, Toliver said:

I ordered Chinese food from a local mom & pop restaurant last night.

Here's a picture of the condiments I got with my order (which included egg rolls and fried shrimp):

 

How bizarre.

 

The only one I ever see her is the tomato ketchup - only served with fries!

 

(Egg rolls aren't Chinese!)

 

Edited by liuzhou (log)
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3 hours ago, liuzhou said:

 

How bizarre.

 

The only one I ever see her is the tomato ketchup - only served with fries!

 

(Egg rolls aren't Chinese!)

 

 

Hsiao-Ching Chou explains why her family's restaurant served egg rolls rather than spring rolls.  Egg rolls were expected to be free.  And served with mustard sauce.  She adds spring rolls may be served with sweet and sour sauce, soy sauce, or chili sauce.  At the moment I wouldn't turn down an egg roll myself.

 

Her book has recipes for spring rolls as well as for restaurant style egg rolls.

 

 

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5 hours ago, liuzhou said:

 

Yes. as Ive said, that is the only way we get mustard. It is a very common green vegetable - usually  stir fried with garlic. Often pickled, too.

 

236917145_mustardgreens.thumb.jpg.08ffe1f8b3a2546bf5ce25666fdd5d7e.jpg

 

Also, very popular in clam and green mustard soup.

 

1280463251_ClamandMustardGreenSoup2.thumb.jpg.e53cbd6fcbda2bb58dd53c3c03b279af.jpg

 

 

 

Are Chinese mustard greens a different plant from the mustard greens we usually see here in the markets? 

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8 hours ago, JoNorvelleWalker said:

 

Hsiao-Ching Chou explains why her family's restaurant served egg rolls rather than spring rolls.  Egg rolls were expected to be free.  And served with mustard sauce.  She adds spring rolls may be served with sweet and sour sauce, soy sauce, or chili sauce.  At the moment I wouldn't turn down an egg roll myself.

 

Her book has recipes for spring rolls as well as for restaurant style egg rolls.

 

 

 

I'm not sure what your point is. I merely pointed out (again) that egg rolls are American-Chinese food, not Chinese. As far as I am concerned they are two separate cusines. Of course, she writes about them - she writes about American-Chinese food.

 

As to spring rolls, they are Chinese (Cantonese), but not as common as people seem to think. Anyway, Vietnam does them much better!

 

Edited by liuzhou (log)
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2 minutes ago, Katie Meadow said:

Are Chinese mustard greens a different plant from the mustard greens we usually see here in the markets? 

 

So I'm lead to believe, but I don't know what you see there!

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2 minutes ago, liuzhou said:

 

I'm not sure what your point is. I merely pointed out (again) that egg rolls are American-Chinese food not Chinese. As far as I am concerned they are two separate cusines. Of course, se writes about them - she writes about American-Chinese food.

 

As to spring rolls, they are Chinese (Cantonese), but not as common as people seem to think. Anyway, Vietnam does them much better!

I never heard of spring rolls until I started eating Vietnamese food. Our favorite local Viet place has both spring rolls and egg rolls, but they certainly aren't served with a side of hot mustard; typically in the Bay Area they come with nuoc mam for dipping, although spring rolls sometimes come with a chunky gloopy peanut sauce, which I don't much care for.

 

 Growing up in NY all our local Chinese (i.e. Chinese-American) restaurants served egg rolls, with two dips, mustard and duck sauce. All this talk about them is giving me a terrible craving for exactly that retro combo. 

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12 minutes ago, liuzhou said:

 

So I'm lead to believe, but I don't know what you see there!

I'll have to look more closely, but the ones I usually see don't look exactly like the ones you picture. I have a recipe for Chinese pickled mustard greens that specifies Chinese mustard greens and I want to try it, so I'm curious. These days I've not been shopping in Oakland Chinatown like I used to before the pandemic, so haven't had a chance to see what's what. 

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What we get here is Brassica Juncea, also known as 'oriental mustard'. I understand it is grown in the USA, but that Braissica Nigra, aka Black mustard, is more common. What the visual and/or taste difference might be, I have no idea.

Edited by liuzhou (log)

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6 minutes ago, liuzhou said:

What we get here is Brassica Juncea, also known as 'oriental mustard'. I understand it is grown in the USA, but that Braissica Nigra, aka Black mustard, is more common. What the visual and/or taste difference might be, I have no idea.

Clearly I need to get off the couch but it's 11 pm here, so my exploration will have to wait. Are you like my close friend Naomi who is a fountain of information but who also, if she doesn't know the answer makes up something? She's very convincing, and often on the right track. I trust you both, regardless!

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6 hours ago, Katie Meadow said:

Are you like my close friend Naomi who is a fountain of information but who also, if she doesn't know the answer makes up something?

 

I try never to make things up. All my working life in education taught me that that doesn't work. You get busted!

Edited by liuzhou (log)
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1 hour ago, liuzhou said:

 

I'm not sure what your point is. I merely pointed out (again) that egg rolls are American-Chinese food not Chinese. As far as I am concerned they are two separate cusines. Of course, se writes about them - she writes about American-Chinese food.

 

As to spring rolls, they are Chinese (Cantonese), but not as common as people seem to think. Anyway, Vietnam does them much better!

 

The point is her family ate spring rolls at home and served egg rolls in their restaurant.  Chou's mother's family is from Manchuria and her father's family is from Henan.

 

 

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4 minutes ago, JoNorvelleWalker said:

 

The point is her family ate spring rolls at home and served egg rolls in their restaurant.  Chou's mother's family is from Manchuria and her father's family is from Henan.

 

 

 

Yes, but their restaurant was Chinese-American as are her books.

 

By the way, Manchuria is a somewhat offensive name to most Chinese people. It was given to the lands in the north-east by the Japanese occupiers (1932-1945) who installed their puppet emperor. To the Chinese, it is Dongbei, meaning 'north-east and comprising the provinces of Heilongjiang, Liaoning and Jilin.

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7 hours ago, liuzhou said:

As to spring rolls, they are Chinese (Cantonese), but not as common as people seem to think. Anyway, Vietnam does them much better!

Just for completeness, spring rolls are found all over SE Asia. In Indonesia they're lumpia, Thailand poh pia, etc. In Vietnam, it can vary greatly depending on region - the Central Viet version uses a different type of wrapper and they're skinnier (and not as tasty imo) than the Southern version.

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23 minutes ago, KennethT said:

Just for completeness, spring rolls are found all over SE Asia. In Indonesia they're lumpia, Thailand poh pia, etc. In Vietnam, it can vary greatly depending on region - the Central Viet version uses a different type of wrapper and they're skinnier (and not as tasty imo) than the Southern version.

 

Indeed, but they seem to have originated in Cantonese cuisine. Agree HCM City probably has the best chả giò. And they certainly don't come with mustard!

Edited by liuzhou (log)
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I find the east coast/west coast condiments on offer surprising.  Wonder how that happened.  I could never live in Cali now knowing duck sc is not available.  And ketchup, why? Besides mustard, our packet options include soy and hot sc (as in tabasco) w I don't use. 

That wasn't chicken

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27 minutes ago, mgaretz said:

@liuzhou What we get in the Asian grocers around here (SF Bay Area) is labeled as Gai Choy and is more compact and curly at the base than what you pictured.  Do they have that in China and how is it different than what you posted?

 

It isn't different. Gai choy (芥菜) is the Cantonese name of what is known in Mandarin as jiè cài.. It is the same plant that I posted - Brassica Juncea.

 

There are however, several sub-types. There is a reasonable summary here.

 

Edited by liuzhou (log)
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4 hours ago, liuzhou said:

 

It isn't different. Gai choy (芥菜) is the Cantonese name of what is known in Mandarin as jiè cài.. It is the same plant that I posted - Brassica Juncea.

 

There are however, several sub-types. There is a reasonable summary here.

 

 

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1 hour ago, JoNorvelleWalker said:

My granddaughter reports that in her three visits spring rolls were common in China.  She adds that it could be a case of catering to foreigners.

 

 

Spring rolls (春卷 - chūn juǎn) are common* (but not with mustard); it's egg rolls which aren't known. The spring roll sales aren't catering for foreigners - many of my local restaurants have them, but I'm the only foreigner in the city and rarely eat them.

 

*particularly right now as we are in the middle of the Spring Festival (Feb 12th-26th this year)

Edited by liuzhou (log)
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7DB431FA-6AA2-4AEF-9085-B000FE9D0B43.thumb.jpeg.643026c0202f1c4f609bff6256af8275.jpeg

 

These, from Costco, seem to be confusing eggrolls and spring rolls! I quite enjoy them but they are not eggrolls by any stretch of the imagination. 

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1 hour ago, Anna N said:

7DB431FA-6AA2-4AEF-9085-B000FE9D0B43.thumb.jpeg.643026c0202f1c4f609bff6256af8275.jpeg

 

These, from Costco, seem to be confusing eggrolls and spring rolls! I quite enjoy them but they are not eggrolls by any stretch of the imagination. 

 

and not Chinese. They seem more Vietnam-influenced to me. 'Minh' is Vietnamese.

Edited by liuzhou (log)
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