Sat, Jul 07, 2018 - Page 13 News List

Ian’s Table: Ain’t no snowflake

Better known as an ornamental garden plant, white water snowflake is a nutrition-packed vegetable that is as easy to eat as it is to prepare

By Ian Bartholomew  /  Contributing Reporter

Stir fried white water snowflake in sesame oil with beef tenderloin

Recipe (Serves 2)

White water snowflake is easy to prepare and can be very delicious. The trick is speed and a light touch with the flavorings. Simply tossing it into a wok with some wood ear fungus and garlic is quite enough to turn out a tasty side dish, and the flavor of the dish can be tarted up with fermented bean paste or kaoliang wine. After many variations, I have found that the combination of ginger, sesame oil and beef works best, providing a assertive background that still allows the vegetable space to express itself.


200g white water snowflake, cut into 5cm lengths

200g beef tenderloin, finely sliced (shredded pork also works)

5 dried Chinese mushrooms

1 small nub of ginger, minced

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 teaspoon corn starch

1 tablespoon dark sesame oil

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

Quarter cup vegetable stock, or water

Large pinch white pepper

Salt to season

Sprinkling of white sesame seeds


1. Marinate the beef in soy and corn starch for about 10 minutes.

2. Soak the Chinese mushrooms in boiling water and cover for about five minutes. Remove, cut away the stem and slice.

3. Heat the vegetable oil and fry the ginger on medium heat until fragrant.

4. Add the marinated beef. Allow to sear for 30 seconds. Add sesame oil, sliced mushrooms and stir.

5. Add the white water snowflake, season with salt and white pepper. Add stock and turn heat to high.

6. Allow the liquid to evaporate and taste for seasoning.

7. Serve with a sprinkling of sesame seeds.

Ian Bartholomew runs Ian’s Table, a small guesthouse in Hualien. He has lived in Taiwan for many years writing about the food scene and has decided that until you look at farming, you know nothing about the food you eat. He can be contacted at

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