Take the greens and discard damaged or discoloured leaves. Remove 1cm (⅓in) from the bases and cut the leaves into 10cm (4in) strips, cutting the thicker stems in half lengthways. Wash well and drain. It’s important when frying the greens that there is a little water clinging to them, so don’t pat them dry. Mix the fish sauce, tamari, sake and water together and keep close by.
Heat up a wok and, when it’s smoking, add a few spoonfuls of sesame oil and swirl it around. Add a quarter of the greens and toss gently. Keep on a high heat and fry for 1 minute, tossing occasionally. Add one-fifth of the sake mix and fry for another 30 seconds, then tip the greens into a large bowl. Cook the rest of the greens in the same way.
Finally, heat up the wok again and add sesame oil, then put in the shiitake mushrooms and stir well over a high heat for 30 seconds. Add the last of the sake mix and cook until it is almost evaporated. Add the mushrooms to the greens, mix well and eat at once.
© 1997 Peter Gordon. All rights reserved.