Star anise, shaped like an eight-pointed star, is the fruit of a small evergreen tree native to southwest China.
Scientifically known as Illicium verum, star anise contains anethole – a derivative of aromatic phenylpropene.
Anethole has potential antimicrobial properties against bacteria, yeast, and fungi. In large quantities, anethole is slightly toxic, so please consume star anise moderately.
Star anise is commonly used in diverse cuisines, including Chinese, Indian, Indonesian, Vietnamese ones.
Star anise is an ingredient of the traditional Chinese / Peranakan five-spice powder.
Indonesian rendang curry, Indian meals of Briyani / biryani and masala chai also use star anise.
Warm in nature, star anise has been used to relieve rheumatism and cold.
Star anise also contains shikimic acid, a precursor compound for the anti-influenza drug oseltamivir, popularly known as Tamiflu, manufactured by Roche.
DOM Bénédictine (法国廊酒) is a Made-in-France medicinal herbal liqueur beverage (1) developed in 1510 in a Benedictine monastery in Abbey of Fécamp, Normandy, France, and later (2) rediscovered by Alexandre Le Grand in 1863.
DOM stands for “Deo Optimo Maximo” (“To God, most good, most great”) and is a commonly used abbreviation at the beginning of documents of the Benedictine Order. Aspiring like the highly dedicated manual & intellectual work of the Benedictine monks for God, we sincerely hope to produce delicious and nutritious meals with optimum and maximum love for our loved ones.
While the exact recipe of this 40%-alcohol liqueur is a closely guarded secret hitherto, we know that it is distilled in antique hammered copper pot stills and aged in oak barrels for four months.
When I just delivered baby Ren, I was given several bottles of DOM. The generations of our parents and grandparents believe that luxurious DOM helps mothers to recover from childbirth, especially during confinement. Thank you for such a gift with over 500 years of tradition!
Sea cucumber is rich in proteins and minerals. Eating sea cucumber helps in strengthening the kidneys, relieving dehydration and nourishing blood. Sea cucumber is also often consumed post-surgery to aid wound healing.
We are grateful for the gift of sea cucumber from Zhen and Emerald brand scallops (products of Canada) from Agnes & Francis. Thank you!
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 10 + 60 minutes
♥ 1 sea cucumber (海参), washed & cut into bite chunks
♥ 3 scallops (带子)
♥ 4 shitake mushrooms (香菇), quartered
♥ 2 tbsp meat (肉), minced
♥ 25g lily flowers (金针花), washed & soaked in warm water for > 30 minutes
♥ 50g bean curd skin / bean stick ( 腐竹), washed, soaked in warm water, rinsed & cut into bite-size
♥ 5 cloves garlic (蒜头)
♥ 1 tbsp dark soy sauce (kecap manis)
♥ 1 knob ginger (姜), minced
♥ 1 tbsp olive oil (橄榄油)
♥ 1 tbsp sesame oil (麻油)
♥ white pepper powder (白胡椒粉), to taste
♥ 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder (桂皮粉)
♥ 2 star anise (八角)
♥ 1 tsp DOM Bénédictine
♥ 350 ml water
1. Soak frozen pre-cleaned sea cucumber, scallop, dried mushrooms in room temperature water. Soak bean stick & lily flowers with warm water. Blanch meat.
2. Wash, squeeze, cut mushrooms. Massage mushrooms with sesame oil.
3. Strain meat dry and mix with garlic & ginger.
4. Heat non-stick frying pan with olive oil.
5. Sauté garlic, ginger, mushrooms, meat over high heat until fragrant.
6. Add scallops, DOM, cinnamon, star anise, dark soy sauce over medium heat until scallops turn slightly golden brown at their edges.
7. Add & sauté bean stick & lily flowers.
8. Add and spread sea cucumber on the pan, add water to cover sea cucumber.
9. After water is boiling, turn heat to low and simmer for 60 minutes or until sea cucumber turn chewy. Stir occasionally. Ensure that sea cucumber is covered with liquid, else top up some water.
♥ Zhen’s advice not to overcook the sea cucumbers as they will dissolve into gel-like texture.
♥ The alcohol content of DOM has evaporated during the cooking process so I also enjoy this nutritious dish while breastfeeding.
♥ This dish can be frozen (for ~3 days) / kept in a fridge (until next day) and served with fast-cooking noodles to prepare for a #5minutemeal breakfast.