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Vegan Pyogobusut-tangsoo (Sweet and Sour Shitake Mushroom) Recipe

January 7, 2011

Vegan Pyogobusut-tangsoo

Pyogobusut-tangsoo is a yummy fried mushroom dish with sweet and sour sauce. (Pyogobusut means Shitake mushrooms and tangsoo means sweet and sour.) I absolutely love it, it is one of my favorite dishes – ever!

And it’s THE staple Vegan Korean dish. Any vegan restaurant you visit in Seoul will have this dish as one of their main dishes as well – a very popular dish. 😉 So you’ll definitely want to try this one out!

Vegan Pyogobusut-tangsoo (Sweet and Sour Shitake Mushroom) Recipe (Serves 4-5)

3 cups sliced Shitake mushrooms (use big slices, OR you could use small whole mushrooms)
vegetable oil for frying
Batter Ingredients :
1 cup Korean tempura mix (from a Korean grocery store) OR mix of potato starch or whole wheat flour (we sometimes use 100% whole wheat flour, but it’ll be light and crispy if you use potato starch)
1/2-3/4 cup water (see how you like the batter)
1 tsp soy sauce
some black pepper
a sprinkle of salt
Sauce Ingredients:
1 cup water
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp potato starch
1-2 Tbsp white vinegar (or more, to taste)
2-4 Tbsp raw cane sugar (or more, to taste. I like it a bit sweeter, but don’t go crazy! :P)
1 tsp sesame oil
Veggie Ingredients in Sauce
1 red bell pepper or carrot (sliced or cubed)
1 small Asian cucumber (halved and sliced) or 7 brussel sprouts (halved)
1 cup pineapple or apple (cubed)
1/4 purple cabbage (sliced or cubed)
1/2 large onion (optional, cut into medium size blocks)
2 Korean peppers (optional, thinly sliced: can substitute with any spicy pepper)
5 black mushrooms (optional, soaked and cut into small bite size pieces)
1. Soak Shitake mushroom in water overnight.
2. Squeeze out the water (squeeze REALLY WELL using paper towels, this is the secret to a good pyogobusut-tangsoo!) and keep the mushroom soaked water for making the sauce.
3. Mix all batter ingredients together well so it doesn’t have any lumps.
4. Add the squeezed mushrooms into the batter and coat.
5. Using a deep-fryer or a small saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat and fry the battered mushrooms. (You need to really fry it long enough so it’s very crisp, that is really the key to a yummy Pyogobusut-tangsoo. The textbook Korean way is to actually fry it twice!)
6. Let the mushrooms cool on a paper towel to drain excess oil. Optional: Once the mushrooms have cooled somewhat, fry them again and then return to fresh towels to drain oil (this makes them crispier).
7. Put all the sauce ingredients (except the sesame oil) into a large bowl and mix well.
8. Heat a pan, put the sauce ingredients in, bring to boil and stir occasionally. Lower heat and let it simmer until the sauce thickens.
9. When the sauce thickens and you like the consistency, turn off heat.
10. Add the veggie ingredients and toss for 5 seconds do the veggies are slightly wilted. (Do not cook them with the sauce, it’ll taste bitter!)
11. Pour sauce over fried mushroom and mix well. Serve with rice and other banchan!

soaked shitake mushroomsBe sure to soak the mushrooms well so they are tender.

frying battered shitake mushrooms
Fry the mushrooms until they are lightly browned. Remember, double frying is optional but will make them crispier.

Cooling fried shitake mushrooms
Cool the mushrooms on paper towels to soak up grease.

cooking pyogobusut-tansgsoo sauce
Cook the sauce until it thickens and add the vegetables.

Vegan Pyogobusut-tangsoo

7 Comments leave one →
  1. May 8, 2011 5:55 pm

    This looks good. I love fried mushroom and often use oyster mushrooms (deep fried). Korean market sells a lot of oyster mushroom and they are cheap.

    • Sunnie permalink*
      May 8, 2011 10:22 pm

      Yes, and you really should try the Songyi-busut-gui (King oyster mushroom) recipe as well, Debbie. That one is really our favorite! 😛

  2. shilpa permalink
    July 16, 2011 5:28 am

    This is the best website ever! I’m a vegetarian Indian living in Sydney, Australia and find it very difficult to experience the true flavours of various Asian cuisines because they are mainly catered to meat dishes. With this website i can appreciate the flavours of Korean food without worrying that i’m eating some kind of animal…..thank you and keep up all your good work!

    • Sunnie permalink*
      July 16, 2011 7:40 am

      Thanks for visiting Shilpa, I’m so glad to hear our blog will be useful! Please visit often and always let us know if you have any questions while cooking Korean food!

  3. DjouBK permalink
    August 2, 2012 9:38 pm

    Yesterday, my guests, my husbands and I LOVED this recipe ! It’ll sure become part of my cooking repertory ^^ Merci !

    • Sunnie permalink*
      August 2, 2012 9:46 pm

      That is wonderful! So glad you enjoyed it. It is one of our favorite dishes too! 😉


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