It took me a while to figure out the name of this vegetable.
I was never told the name before and hence always thought of this as steamboat/hotpot vegetable as I only ever saw it at steamboat restaurants. I’ve never seen it apart from that. But when I saw it at the market, I knew I should try cooking it apart from it’s stereotypical setting. Still in a soupy dish but with more concentrated flavours.
Tong Ho or garland chrysanthemum is a crunchy vegetable that takes very little time to cook. It tastes somewhat pungent in a way that lets you know it’s there but in a gentle way. Not sure if you get what I mean. The leaves are similar to flowering chrysanthemums but I guess this one is more tender and edible.
I decided to cook it into a simple brothy dish so it stands out on its own. I want to taste the pungency in its full glory, just as how I like to taste every ingredient of every dish I cook. So I made it with:
I made Daikon Carrot Chicken Stew as well and I will be sharing it here soon. But for now, the tong ho stood out well. Unique flavour that I think no other vegetables can compare to. So yes, tong ho isn’t just for steamboat or hot pot!
“And I will walk among you, and will be your God, and ye shall be My people.” (Leviticus 26:12)
Tong Ho with Mushrooms & Tomatoes
8 bunches Tong Ho, appx 250-300 gms, roots removed and grit carefully washed off
8 Cherry Tomatoes, halved
2 cloves Garlic, peeled & minced
3 thin slices Ginger
appx 100gms Asparagus Mushroom (or whatever mushroom available)
1 tbsp Oyster Sauce
1 tsp Brown Sugar
1 pinch ground Black Pepper
4 tbsp Water or more if want it to be soupier
additional Salt (if needed)
- Make sure every single tong ho leaf is washed as these are gritty and sandy. Flick off water and set aside.
- In 1 tbsp vegetable oil, saute minced garlic and ginger slices until fragrant, about 1/2 minute.
- Add halved tomatoes and mushrooms. Pour in oyster sauce, water, sugar and pepper. Give them a toss for about 1 minute.
- Scatter in tong ho leaves and stir until the leaves have wilted, for about 1-2 minutes.
- Dish it out immediately lest the leaves lose too much water and become stringy.
- Serve and savour!