I've mentioned before that being half Chinese and being part of a Jewish family can have some interesting culinary blockers, as Chinese food often features pork and seafood so often. I challenged myself to make a typical Chinese New Year dimsum dish that both sides of the family could enjoy.
Lo bak go, also known as radish cake, turnip cake and white carrot cake, is actually a savoury dish and mostly made of daikon, but also traditionally calls for Chinese dried pork sausage and dried shrimps. Instead I used turkey kabanos and fried anchovies.
Ready? Let's go.
600g grated daikon radish
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 anchovies, chopped finely
4 shitake mushrooms, chopped
6 mini turkey kabanos, chopped into little cubes
2 spring onions, chopped
150g rice flour
1 tsp caster sugar
Pinch of ground Sichuan (or black, if you can't find it) pepper
Chilli Sauce (I make my own with homemade mala chilli oil, black chinkiang vinegar, soya sauce, Shaoxing wine and sugar)
1 chopped spring onion
Chopped pickled chilli
1. Fry the daikon with the water in a wok (with no oil) until the daikon has wilted to about half the size and the water has reduced by half. Transfer into a large bowl and set aside to cool.
2. In the same wok, fry the anchovies, mushrooms, kabanos and a bit of the white part of the spring onions in the oil until the kabanos have crisped up and released a lot of their oil. Take off the heat and add in the rest of the spring onions, stirring to combine.
3. Once cooled, add the rice flour, sugar and pepper to the daikon, stirring thoroughy. Stir in the kabanos mixture thoroughly, scoop into an oiled loaf tin and steam for about an hour and a half, until set and slightly translucent. Leave to cool.
4. Pop the slab of lo bak go out of the mould, slice it up and fry the slices in a little sesame oil turning so both sides crisp up. Serve with your favourite chilli sauce and a scattering of more fresh spring onions.
Enjoy, and have fun!