Conpoy and Dried Mushroom Sauce on a Bed of Spinach

 Hello everyone. Thank you for the suggestions and tips on choosing a camera and taking good pictures. I knew I chose the right group of people to ask. I’d have to say, you guys sure do have expensive taste 😀 I think I may have to save up a bit lot before my next camera.

Anyways, I haven’t posted a recipe in a while so I thought it was time I post one. This is a sauce made with conpoy (dried scallops) and dried mushrooms that you can put on top of almost any type of veggie. I chose spinach for this post but you can use broccoli, iceberg lettuce, gai lan, whatever veggie you prefer. 

Ingredients:

  • 8-12 dried scallops
  • 8-12 dried Shiitake mushrooms
  • 3 TBS oyster sauce
  • 1 TBS sugar
  • 3 tsp corn starch
  • 1 tsp chicken broth powder
  • 1/2 cup water

When you buy dried scallops or dried mushrooms, make sure you take them out of the bag and put them in an air-tight container such as a jar or Tupperware container. This protects them from any moisture.

Give the scallops and mushrooms a good rinse and scrub with your hands to get off any dirt.

Soak the scallops in a bowl with about one and a half cup of water overnight.

In a separate bowl, soak the mushrooms in three cups of water overnight (STEMS DOWN in the water please).

This is what they will look like once ready. If you don’t want to soak them overnight I think three to four hours should be sufficient time.

Turn the mushrooms over to soak the tops for another hour.

DO NOT dump out the mushroom and scallop water after soaking as this is where all the flavor is. Cut about 2 cm off the ends of the mushroom stems and throw the mushrooms in a pot with all the scallop and mushroom water. Bring water to a simmer. Turn heat down to medium low and allow to simmer for about half an hour.

While water is simmering, shred scallops by hand. Trust me, no need to bring out any expensive kitchen appliance as these scallops will shred very easily.

In a bowl mix together oyster sauce, chicken broth powder, corn starch, sugar and water. This is the brand of oyster sauce I usually buy. Lee Kum Kee premium oyster sauce

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl until as little chunks as possible.

Turn the heat up to high, pour in the sauce while stirring constantly. Once the sauce thickens and starts to simmer, turn the heat back to low. Cover lid and let simmer for another hour. Make sure you stir about every ten minutes so the sauce does not burn or stick to the bottom of the pot.

When done, it should look something like this. It should have the consistency of ketchup except just a tad more runny. If it is too runny you can always mix a teaspoon of cornstarch with four tablespoons of water and then add that to the sauce while stirring constantly.

Have your bed of cooked vegetables ready and pour the sauce over it. I just stir fried some spinach with garlic, cooking oil and a bit of Chinese cooking wine. Once again here is my pathetic attempt (with a very bad camera )at making my dish look yummy. Until I save up the money you guys will just have to get used to these blurry pictures, sorry. Unless someone has a nicer camera they would like to donate to the LeeQie (pronounced leaky)Fund 😉 Yes, that’s one of my many wierd nicknames. How about you guys, do you have a nickname you’d like to share? Hope you enjoy this sauce if you do decide to make it.

Before I leave I just wanted to ask you to please check out this post on Mary’s blog on how to protect your blog contents from getting stolen. She has some great tips. If you have time also check out her blog and recipes, this woman sure can cook! Until next time friends and family. Have a great weekend/long weekend!

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34 Responses to “Conpoy and Dried Mushroom Sauce on a Bed of Spinach”


  1. 1 luckytastebuds May 28, 2010 at 11:16 pm

    this is absolutely one of my favorite Chinese dishes!! Gai lan is probably my favorite vegetable in Asia, and oyster sauce is my #1 go-to sauce. hahah Wow i’m craving Cantonese food right now and it’s midnight!! I’ll be back in Hong Kong in 10 days…wish I could virtually send you some great food. 🙂 hope you have a wonderful weekend!!

  2. 2 Cindy Aguilar May 29, 2010 at 12:23 am

    Nicknames, hmmm C’s, CB, Cyn, that is about it :)! Have a great long weekend! I did not know what Conpoy was! Thanks for telling me 🙂

  3. 3 serena May 29, 2010 at 2:25 am

    nice. very restaurant style like.

  4. 4 denise @ quickies on the dinner table May 29, 2010 at 5:00 am

    Hey LeQuan – you know so much of your cooking resembles Chinese wedding banquet dishes! I love it and I love this! I wouldn’t share even if it’s a communal plated LOL

    You don’t have to spend a bomb on the camera – what are you using now? I use a Casio Exilim 10.1 Megapixel which cost me SGD 199 though there was a discount. You can take decent pics with a point and shoot – just put it on Macro setting and ALWAYS shoot in daylight, preferably by a nice big window. I find late morning sunlight (before noon) the absolute best and that my friend, is EVERYTHING I know about taking food pics. Not much I know 😛 Still hoping for a DSLR and maybe some photog lessons *sigh*

    You know LeQuan – DSLRs are pretty complicated (I’ve heard) and many bloggers have moaned that without photog lessons, they are at a loss about how to use their DSLR and many of them go back to their point and shoot – after spending an obscene amount 😛

    • 5 luvtoeat May 29, 2010 at 7:15 pm

      Hey Denise,

      Ok now I’m going to look even worse than before cause believe it or not I have the exact same camera as you lol. No joke! But I guess natural light really helps. I take my food pics usually in the evening of my dishes right before dinner so there’s not much natural light there. That’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it. Haha. Thank you for your picture taking tips! I’ll definitely keep those in mind next time I take pics. I actually really like my camera but when I compared my pics with yours and Stella’s I thought I had a really bad camera. Guess I’m just a really bad photographer lol. Oh gosh, I have to shut up before I make myself look any worse on my own blog.

  5. 6 aletheiazoe May 29, 2010 at 7:16 am

    Oh, Mushrooms. How I love you. I GO CRAZY FOR SHROOOOOOMS!!!

    Seriously.

    I’ve never tried the dried scallops deal though. I can imagine it tasting pretty umami and all though, especially with that oyster sauce!

    Oh, LeeQie. How cute you are. My nickname (well, the nickname that people like to call me) is Ale. Pronounced “Uh-lee”. I have been told it is the name of some Arabian Ali-Baba, or something. How nice.

  6. 8 Stella May 29, 2010 at 5:20 pm

    Hey LeQuan, this dish sounds so good. I’ve never used dry scallops before. I suppose I might like them though, b/c I love things with dry shrimp in them. Hmm, I might have to try this too…

    By the way, I can tell your camera isn’t that bad, LeQuan. Mine sucks by the way. Some of your photos are actually really clear. A major thing that a lot of people don’t do is use a tripod or at least a stack of books/coffee tin to lean the camera on, so it will be completely still. This is so important! Denise is right about proper lighting too-that can ruin the clearness of a photo that would otherwise be nice. The last thing is food styling, which is also so necessary for style. I call these things the photography trinity. I wrote you an e-mail about it, but you didn’t respond (tear running down my cheek-smile).
    Oh, and do you use Gimp-it’s free and clears up the photos in a lot of different ways!

    Have a relaxing weekend, LeQuan. I’m starting now…

    • 9 luvtoeat May 29, 2010 at 6:16 pm

      Aaack! You emailed me? I never got the email! I totally would have responded. Oh I feel so bad. Thank you so much for your tips, and taking the time to email. I’ll have to check my junk folder in case it got sent there. I’m so glad you told me about the email! I’ve never used Gimp but will def check it out. Thank you for these awesome tips! I’m going to go check my junk folder now. Hope you’re having a great weekend Stella!

  7. 12 Ameena May 29, 2010 at 7:05 pm

    I LOVE mushrooms but I don’t think I’ve ever had dried mushrooms? I wonder though if the truffle mushrooms I’ve eaten at my favorite Italian restaurant were possibly dried? How can you tell?

    Thanks for the tutorial. I had no idea that dried mushrooms existed. I am ignorant when it comes to food. And lots of other things. 🙂

    Hope you are having a great weekend!

    • 13 luvtoeat May 29, 2010 at 11:45 pm

      That’s a great question Ameena. To be honest, I don’t know what the difference is and how you can tell if the mushrooms are dried or not. But with dried scallops and regular scallops, there’s definitely a stronger taste with the dried scallops. Maybe it’s the same with the mushrooms. I’ve never had truffles before but from watching the Iron Chef I know they’re really expensive. Lol.

  8. 14 bruleeblog May 29, 2010 at 11:07 pm

    My family is so lazy – we usually just order this at a restaurant instead of making it ourselves. LOL

    Your point and shoot camera should have a macro setting (it usually has a flower symbol). That helps with the focus. Light helps too. Natural light is of course better but artificial is ok too as long as there is a lot of it. Sometimes I even use the light on my stove!

  9. 16 Lazaro May 30, 2010 at 2:06 pm

    My kind of dish. Full of flavor. Love the use of dried scallops, I have yet to work with them. I always seem to learn something reading your blog. Thank you.

    Cheers!

  10. 17 Lazaro May 31, 2010 at 12:04 am

    LeQuan,

    I have a few awards for this amazing blog! Please check them out here.

    http://lazarocooks.blogspot.com/2010/05/blogger-awards-guest-post.html

  11. 18 sophia May 31, 2010 at 5:24 am

    People in Singapore call me Soap. Mostly because they are unable to pronounce my name properly…instead of So-Fi-A, they call me so-FIA, rhyming with so blah. Annoying.

    Anyway. Dried scallops! Aren’t they more expensive than fresh ones? Are they in any way more nutritious or flavorful than the fresh ones?

    • 19 luvtoeat May 31, 2010 at 4:29 pm

      Hey Sophia,

      Dried scallops are more expensive than fresh ones and definitely have much more flavor to them. If you use 2 or 3 scallops it can really liven up the taste of your dish. Usually used in congee, with steamed egg, sauces like the one I made, or as a main ingredient in XO sauce. As for nutrition, I’m not quite sure.

  12. 20 Can You Stay for Dinner May 31, 2010 at 9:19 am

    LeQuan, I love this dish! THanks for the awesome step by step process- it always helps to see what the meal looks like at the various stages, it’s why I always like to take pictures the whole way through!

    Your meals always inspire me to be more adventurous with what I cook. I looove mushrooms so I have to try this!

    Hope you’re having a great weekend and a great day!!

  13. 21 Roti n Rice May 31, 2010 at 7:41 pm

    I can imagine what this dish tastes like….a really nice combo with the mushrooms! I used to add dried scallops to my boys’ porridge. It makes the porridge really tasty.

  14. 22 Leah @ Why Deprive? May 31, 2010 at 8:40 pm

    This sounds really good!! I didn’t know you could get dried scallops.

  15. 23 tigerfish May 31, 2010 at 8:59 pm

    An expensive dish in the restaurant but homemade version is always better and not that steep.

    I am still using a point and shoot too 🙂

  16. 24 Jessie June 1, 2010 at 6:13 am

    What a delicious recipe, LeQuan! Mushrooms and scallops and spinach – all my favorites in one dish, yum yum!! Peter bought a bag of dried scallops recently, but we haven’t used it yet. This recipe would be perfect. I think the scallops are still in their original packaging – oops. I’ll have to tell him to put it in airtight tupperware. And Lee Kum Kee oyster sauce is my favorite! We have it in our fridge! Well, the fridge back on the other side of the world 😉

    Don’t worry about the pictures. I think they look great as they are, so only imagine what they would be like with a SUPER DUPER million dollar camera! Right now I’m lugging a huge, heavy camera all around Beijing because I’m too cheap (or poor, rather 😛 ) to buy a better one. Oh well, gets the job done!

    “LeeQie” – hehe, cute 🙂 My younger sister and I were called “wiener” by our older sister when we were little, for no particular reason whatsoever. In fact, she still calls us that now … 🙂

    • 25 luvtoeat June 1, 2010 at 11:08 am

      Hey Jessie!

      Actually if the scallops are in their original bag sealed and not opened yet then they should be ok. If you’ve already opened them then it’s best to transfer the rest into a Tupperware. When you go to HK and you want to buy more I would recommend getting them there than in the US or Canada as they would be cheaper. Make sure you go with your aunt or someone who knows a reputable vendor. You wouldn’t believe how many fake scallop vendors there are. I usually ask my in-laws to get dried stuff like this from HK cause it’s cheaper.

      I didn’t know you had sibblings. It’s nice to find out new stuff about you once in a while. Hope you’re having a good sleep “wiener” 😉

  17. 26 5 Star Foodie June 1, 2010 at 8:16 am

    This sounds super delicious with scallops and mushrooms!

  18. 27 eatspinlive June 1, 2010 at 8:26 am

    I love spinach and mushrooms and this sounds absolutely amazing 🙂

  19. 28 Anju June 1, 2010 at 10:43 am

    LeQuan, you are making me hungry again, lol. Have you ever tried those bottles of abalone sauce? I tried making something similar to your dish with it before and it was pretty good. 🙂

  20. 30 Katherine: What About Summer? June 1, 2010 at 5:23 pm

    this is a neat recipe; I’ve never seen something like that

  21. 31 Devaki June 1, 2010 at 9:59 pm

    Dear Lequan – You make me want to spoon your food right into my mouth. I love the flavors in your homespun dishes and Gai lan is my absolute fave asian veggie (along with kangkong)& love the dried mushrooms + a sucker for dried fish.

    So there you have it! There is nothing here that I don’t love 🙂

    BTW, I feel your camera woes but refuse to break the bank when blogging earns no moolah 😉

    Ciao, Devaki @ weavethousandflavors

  22. 32 JJ June 4, 2010 at 11:40 am

    Where do you buy your dried scallops from? I don’t know which vendors in Edmonton are reputable… Thanks!

    • 33 luvtoeat June 4, 2010 at 1:38 pm

      Hi JJ,

      I usually get my dried goods from HK but sometimes if I run out I will get them at Ping Lung Tong 10868 97st just north of China town. Hope that helps.

  23. 34 M. Charlot January 26, 2011 at 8:02 am

    This recipe is great for the coming Lunar New Year celebration. Thanks!


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