JimBo’s Global Spoon

Spicy Fried Mushroom with Cashews


    While travelling in the north of Thailand, in a city called Chiang Mai, I came across a small food stand with a few fold-out tables and chairs for outdoor dining.
The cook was an elderly lady who was equipped with a wok heated by propane, sauces and limited ingredients to make amazing Thai meals. She asked me to point out the main ingredients that I wanted in my meal and then invited me to stand and observe while she cooked.
Cashews, mushroom, tofu and chilies were the items I selected. Within seconds, she placed the tofu in the heated wok. She asked me how spicy I liked my food by asking me how many small extremely hot Bird chilies I wanted.
Later, her daughter, who spoke some English, gave me a general recipe. It is a dish I often make because it is simple and fast to make. Serve it on a bed of Jasmine or brown rice and you will not be disappointed.

2 to 3 tablespoons oil
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 1/2 cups cashew nuts (unsalted)
3 cups mushroom (straw – preferred)
1/2 cup firm tofu (cubed)
1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
1 tablespoon sweet soy sauce
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1-2 Bird chili peppers (fresh – thin sliced)
1 cup Thai basil leaves

Fry tofu in a well-oiled heat wok (high heat), 2-3 min. Add garlic and one chili pepper – cook until garlic begins to brown, about 30 – 40 sec. Add cashew nuts and stir fry, until they begin to brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Add mushroom and stir fry until for 4 – 5 minutes. Add soy sauces and stir fry for about 3 minutes. Stir in one more chili pepper. Stir in basil leaves – stir until all is combined. Serve on a bed of Jasmine or brown rice.
Serves 3 to 4.