One-pot glass noodles & braised Chinese mushrooms

This simple vegetarian rice dish is a useful weeknight backup – it needs practically no preparation and uses storecupboard ingredients to make a nourishing, filling meal


  • 1 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 tbsp medium curry paste (Madras is a good one to use)
  • 250g basmati rice, rinsed
  • 450ml vegetable stock
  • 400g can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • handful of raisins
  • 175g frozen leaf spinach, thawed
  • handful of cashew nuts
  • natural yogurt to serve (optional)


    1. Tip the shiitake mushrooms, wood ear fungus and dried bean curd into three separate bowls and pour around 300ml boiling water into each, to cover the contents. Leave for 1 hr, then drain, keeping only the mushroom water.
    2. Cut the stems away from the shiitake mushrooms, then slice the stems and tops into even strips and set aside. Slice the bean curd into 5cm-thick pieces and set aside, then thinly slice the wood ear fungus into pieces, too, before setting aside.
    3. Heat 1 tbsp of the vegetable oil in a pan over a medium-high heat. Add half the garlic and all the ginger, stir in the mushrooms and cook on a medium-high heat for 1 min before adding the shaosing wine. Mix, then tip into a bowl and set aside. In the same pan, still over a medium-heat, add the remaining 1 tbsp vegetable oil and the remaining garlic, then stir in the Chinese celery and cook for 1 min before setting aside.
    4. Combine the mushroom water with 250ml cold water in the pan and bring to the boil. Add back the mushrooms and bean curd and cook on a medium-low heat for 15 mins. Add the oyster sauce, light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, sugar and ½ tsp salt, then mix well.
    5. Add the wood ear fungus, cook for 10 mins, then add the Chinese celery and carrot strips and cook for 5 mins.
    6. Put the glass noodles in a heatproof bowl, then pour over boiling water and soak for 3-4 mins. Drain the glass noodles, add to the pan and mix well, then cook for a further 2-3 mins. Scatter over the spring onions and drizzle over the sesame oil to serve.