Violet Oon’s Recipe: Nai Bai with Mushrooms & Goji Berries

Recipes and tips from local chef Violet Oon!

#104_food_violetoonNai Bai is one of my favourite vegetables as it looks very attractive, is crunchy in texture and has a delicious taste. This is one of the vegetables grown in Singapore farms and it is great to know that we are sustaining our farmers and their farms through purchasing local produce.




  • 400g Nai Bai
  • 10 Dried Chinese mushrooms
  • 10 Red dates
  • 4 Whole dried white fungus
  • 2 tbsp Goji berries (wolfberries)
  • 1stick Celery
  • 1 Carrot
  • 1 Large onion
  • 5 cups Water
  • ½ cup Dried soya beans
  • 1 tsp Light soya sauce
  • 1 tbsp Vegetarian oyster sauce
  • 2 tsp Sesame oil
  • 1 pinch Salt
  • 1 tbsp Cornflour mixed with
  • 2 tbsp Water
  • 2 tbsp Vegetable oil


1. Soak dried mushrooms in 1 cup of tap water overnight, then drain. Squeeze dry, cut off the stalks and keep the mushroom water.

2. Wash and soak soya beans in 4 cups water for 4 to 5 hours in a small pot. Add sliced celery, sliced carrots and sliced onions and boil over low heat for 1 to 2 hours to make a delicious vegetable stock. Soak the red dates till soft – about 30 minutes.

3. Wash goji berries and soak in water just enough to cover the berries for 10 minutes. Drain.

4. Wash the white fungus and soak till softened – about 30 minutes. Cut off the hard stalk end.

5. Wash the Nai Bai, cut off the ends of the stalks and leave the plant whole. Blanch briefly in boiling water until the colour changes (Pic 1).

Pic 1
Pic 1


Drain (Pic 2) and keep aside. Keep the water to make vegetable stock for future use.

Pic 2
Pic 2


6. Heat a wok and when it is hot, add the 2 tablespoons of oil and, when oil is hot, add dried mushrooms and fry till a little brown.

7. Then add the red dates, about 2 cups of vegetable stock along with some of the mushroom water and all the other ingredients. Bring to a boil and add the white fungus and when the gravy is thick, turn off the heat.

8. Serve on a platter – with the Nai Bai arranged on one side, and pour the sauce over it.


Food Safety Tips

  • Select vegetables with crispy, fresh leaves, as well as tender and fleshy stems.
  • Soak vegetables in fresh tap water for 15 minutes.

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For the Freshest, Go Local

Choose locally farmed vegetables supplied from farms that are certified under the Good Agricultural Practice for Vegetable Farming (GAP-VF) Scheme.