Natural treasures from the mountains

By Xu Junqian | China Daily | Updated: 2017-08-29 08:03

Natural treasures from the mountains

Malaysian chef Otto Goh is one of those who has been attracted to put Yunnan fungus on his menu. [Photo provided to China Daily]

But chef Lu Yiming, arguably Shanghai's most recognized chef who runs two Michelin-starred restaurant, might disagree.

The Shanghai native believes it's precisely the brief period of the fungi that makes it such a sought after delicacy.

"Eating seasonal fare is, ironically, the most ancient and also the most trendy food philosophy in China," says Lu. At Yong Yi Ting, the Michelin one-starred restaurant under luxury hotel brand Mandarin Oriental Pudong, Shanghai that offers East China's Huaiyang cuisine, he curates two more themed and seasonal menus aside from the usual spring, autumn, winter and summer ones. These are hairy crabs, a river food available from late October to December and in East China only, and fungus from Yunnan.

"Yunjun (short for Yunnan fungus) doesn't really fit into the concept of eating local. But it's native to China, and offers a variety of possibilities to showcase the refined culinary style of Huaiyang cuisine," says Lu.

On his fungus themed menu this year, which offers a dozen choices ranging from appetizers to soup and dim sums, he manages to give them a Shanghainese twist by having them red braised like pork cubes or stir-fried with green vegetables.

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