As you probably know by now, I’m always looking for quick veggie sides, and these Stir Fried Pea Shoots are one of my favorites. If you’ve never eaten pea shoots before, you are in for a treat. Enjoyed throughout Asia, pea shoots are the leaves from a pea plant, usually snow or sugar snap peas. They are mild and sweet, and have a hint of pea flavor.
I funk them up with a blast of dried anchovies and oyster sauce, while Shaoxing wine amplifies their natural sweetness. Stir fries are a busy cook’s best friend; as long as you have your ingredients prepped and ready, the actual cooking part takes just a couple minutes. You can whip up Stir Fried Pea Shoots in a flash while your main, maybe Chicken Adobo, is simmering away.
Stir Fry Prep
If you are the kind of cook that chops and measures and pours as you go, you need to rein that in for stir frying. A successful stir fry depends on having all your ingredients washed, chopped, measured, and within easy reach of the stove top. Wash and drain the pea shoots, slice the garlic, peel and shred the ginger, and get out the bottles for the sauces with measuring spoons. Having everything prepped and within reach makes stir frying a breeze. Plus you don’t run the risk of burning one ingredient while you frantically look in the pantry for that bottle of toasted sesame oil you just know is somewhere.
A quick tip. You can always turn the stove off. I know that sounds stupid and obvious but stir frying is done at extremely high temperatures and for such a short period of time. That extra minute of high heat while you’re having problems pouring something out or go hunting for a forgotten ingredient will scorch the food in the pan, and not in a good way. So if you need to walk away, turn the stove off. It’s ok, it will still be there when you get back 😉
The other stir fry essential is a hot pan. Let it heat for several minutes (you will see a bit of steam/fumes come off the pan) before adding the oil. You don’t want to add the oil before heating the pan, or it will smoke and get bitter.
Then move the garlic and ginger mixture to the side of the pan and start feeding handfuls of pea shoots into the pan. Add the greens with one hand while you continue to stir with the other.
I drizzle the toasted sesame oil on last so its delicate flavor doesn’t get cooked off.
This whole process takes just about 5 minutes. Once I add the sesame oil, I take the Stir Fried Pea Shoots off the heat and serve. So if you are going to serve them as a side, they are amazing served alongside Miso Salmon or Hambagu, plan accordingly and start the stir fry when your main is almost finished. Or make a meal out of several veggie sides like Funky Spicy Green Beans and Roasted Cauliflower. However you choose to enjoy these Stir Fried Pea Shoots, we want to hear about it! Leave a comment, rate the recipe, and of course tag us in your pics @funkyasiankitchen.
Stir Fried Pea Shoots
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 5 minutes
- Total Time: 15 minutes
- Yield: serves 4
- Category: side
- Cuisine: Chinese
- ½ pound snow pea shoots
- 2 Tablespoons neutral oil
- ¼ cup boiled and dried baby anchovies
- 3 cloves garlic sliced
- 1 Tablespoon peeled and shredded ginger
- 2 Tablespoons shaoxing wine
- 1 Tablespoon oyster sauce
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- Fresh black pepper to taste
- Wash and rinse snow pea shoots in a colander under running water. Let it drain in the sink while you heat up the pan.
- Have all of your ingredients lined up next to the stove because the cooking process is just a couple of minutes and goes very quickly.
- Heat a large 12” skillet over high heat for several minutes until you see some fumes coming off the pan. Add the oil, ginger, and garlic. Stir fry for a couple of seconds and push it to the side of the pan. Add the snow pea shoots by handfuls with one hand as you are stir frying with the other.
- Keep moving the pea shoots around for a couple of seconds as they shrink down.
- Add the anchovies and continue to stir fry for another couple seconds.
- Add the shaoxing wine and oyster sauce and continue to stir fry for another 30 seconds until the pea shoots are a vibrant green and just cooked through. Season with fresh ground pepper to taste and the sesame oil. Stir for a final time.
- Turn off the heat, transfer to a plate, and serve immediately.