Shrimp and Wild Rice Stem (茭白) Stir Fry is a crispy and light wild rice stem and shrimp tossed in a light and fragrant ginger sauce.
Time to get back in a Healthy Eating Routine
There is so much hype at this time of year about the big Thanksgiving feast but what are you going eat the other 364 days of the year? If you eat too many turkey leftovers, you are going to start clucking. My goodness that might be a tad bit embarrassing! Well lucky for you, I have a couple of quick and easy healthy dinners coming your way that will keep you on track for mindful eating.
Why you are going to love our Shrimp and Wild Rice Stem (茭白) Stir Fry
Wild rice stem is also called water bamboo and Jiao bai (茭白). Water bamboo stir fry can be on the table in less than 30 minutes and that includes a bit of chopping and steaming your rice. It has loads of warming ginger and antioxidant garlic to keep you healthy during the cold and flu season.
I used fresh water bamboo because, after all, I do live in Hong Kong. However, you could substitute with some canned crisp water chestnuts, canned bamboo shoots or whatever vegetables you have in your refrigerator or even frozen veggies. The beauty of this dish is that you can have everything you need on hand and it can be made in a flash.
However, probably the number one reason you may want to make our Shrimp and Wild Rice Stem (茭白) Stir Fry is maybe you over did it a little bit during the holidays and need to get back on the healthy eating bandwagon. If you are looking to get rid of the carbs, just skip the rice and add more mixed vegetables. This Chinese stir fry is gluten-free and dairy-free and is a snap to throw together.
What's the difference between Bamboo and Wild Rice Stem?
Regular bamboo is tough and hard and requires you to boil it first to take away any toxins before the regular cooking process. Click here to read my post on Star Anise Braised Bamboo Shoots. Wild Rice Stem (water bamboo) is soft, delicate and slightly sweet. Wild Rice Stem does not need to be boiled as it does not have any toxins.
Wild Rice Stem is actually called Jiāo Bái (茭白) or also known as water bamboo here in China but it really does look like a baby bamboo and it grows in the waters of southern China and other Asian countries.Wild Rice Stem (water bamboo) is very cooling so that is why I like to pair this with a nice warming ginger sauce to balance the yin and the yang. Water bamboo clears heat, produces body fluids, promotes urination, reduces dampness, induces bowel movements. However as amusing as it might be, water bamboo is a great cure for hangover as it clears the liver and reduces red eyes so it has that going for it as well. Bring on the Shrimp and Wild Rice Stem (茭白) Stir Fry recipe!
I used fresh water bamboo as really, why not? I live in Asia and when I find things fresh in the market, I have to get them when they are in season. The season for wild rice stem is early fall and is delicious in this Shrimp and Wild Rice Stem (茭白) Stir Fry.
This time of the year can be hectic. I completely understand. Society and culture put so many pressures on us to do these special things around the holiday season and it causes a lot of un-wanted stress. You know the crazy thing as soon as I left the States, I stopped feeling this pressure. The only traditional things we do around the holiday are the ones our immediate family wants to do to continue on with the tradition. Nothing more and nothing less. Be good to yourself during this holiday season and take care of yourself!
My dear friend, Lynn Li, was the first person to introduce me to wild rice stem (茭白) and this is her recipe with a couple of modifications.
More Delicious Easy and Low Carb Chinese Stir Fries
Spicy Pork and Bamboo Stir Fry
Wood Ear Mushroom Vegan Stir Fry
Hungry For More? Subscribe to our Newsletter and follow along on Facebook, You Tube, Instagram, and Pinterest for all the latest updates.
Shrimp and Wild Rice Stem (茭白) Stir Fry
- 24 shrimp
large (shells removed and deveined)
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon salt (½ teaspoon to marinade and ½ teaspoon to end of dish)
- 1 egg whites
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon canola oil or oil of choice
- 1 inch ginger fresh peeled and grated
- 2 cloves garlic peeled and minced
- 2 tablespoon rice wine
shao xing (or can exchange with cooking sherry)
- 2 stems water bamboo (wild rice stem 茭白)
peeled and diced (can sub out with canned bamboo shoots or water chestnuts)
- ½ cup peas
- white pepper
- 2 cups rice - 2 cups cooked (white or brown whatever you prefer) - optional or cauliflower rice to keep it low carb.
- Cook your rice according to directions.
- In the mean time, marinade your shrimp with sesame oil, ½ teaspoon salt, egg white, and cornstarch. Put in refrigerator to marinade for 15-30 minutes.
- Add 1 tablespoon of oil into the wok (frying pan) and add ginger and garlic and saute until aromatic. Next add the shrimp and saute the shrimp quickly for about 1 minute. Add 2 tablespoons of rice wine and mix with shrimp on medium heat for just another minute to get rid of the alcohol taste and when the shrimp are pink, remove from wok.
- Add another tablespoon of oil into the wok add your peeled and sliced water bamboo (water rice stem). Make sure you remove the outer tough green husk and then peel and slice. Don't slice too far in advance as they may brown. Stirfry for a couple of minutes, then put in your frozen peas and stir. Add your shrimp back to the wok season with salt and white pepper as desired.
- Enjoy shrimp and wild rice stem hot from the wok with a side of rice or cauliflower rice.
Shashi at Runninsrilankan says
You are so right Bobbi - we let society and culture put so many pressures on us - and it is within our control how we handle it. My mom is always talking about "cooling" and "Warming" foods but I never know which is which - I've heard of water bamboo but never have used it - this combination of it with shrimp is making my mouth water!
Safe travels dear.
Although I have never heard of this term, I know I had these bamboo in Taiwan, as a matter of fact my mom love it...nice with shrimp and peas...this way you can really taste the bamboo shoots...delicious dish Bobbi.
Have a great week 🙂
Kumar's Kitchen says
wow...such a refreshing,light and delightful stir fry...we love reading and learning new ingredients from your adorable blog...didn't know about wild rice stems before...guess we will be making this soon substituting it with lotus roots....beautiful food clicks as always,thanks...Have A Great Day!!! 😉
This looks so fresh and tasty, BAM! I have never cooked wild rice stem at home but I love it. This is just the kind of dish I'd like for dinner before I polish off a few x'mas cookies! Happy holidays!
Nope, I have never heard of wild rice stem but it reminds me of something else...just can't think of what I've seen that does look like it. This shrimp looks & sounds delicious. That's interesting about the regular bamboo - do the pandas know about that? Isn't that what they eat?
Isn't that the truth about this time of year getting too hectic. Why do we always think we have to overdo everything? I will say that with Thanksgiving landing so late that December certainly snuck up on me! I'm ahead of the game though & got the Christmas tree this past weekend (that's the earliest I've ever gotten around to doing that).
Healthy World Cuisine says
Hello Diane, you are way ahead of me in regards to getting holiday prep under the way. As a matter of fact we just celebrated Thanksgiving on Sunday as this was the only day the whole family would be together. Go figure but HK does not celebrate Thanksgiving... everyone was still going to school, work, etc... LOL You have your tree up already? Good for you! As for the panda bears, I do not know if they like to touch water or not because wild rice stem grows in the water and bamboo grows on dry land. However, wild rice stem are quite delicious and more tender so maybe the panda might even prefer them...will ask little Jia Jia and An An (panda bears) when I stop over Ocean Park next time. Take care, BAM
I can actually say 'the tree is up' without it being a lie (but there aren't any lights or decorations on there yet. Hey, Rome wasn't built in a day you know. Oh do say hi to Jia Jia and An An...I love panda bears.
I have not even heard of wild rice stem but its nutritional qualities sound like what I need, especially the hangover cure since Xmas is around the corner.
Culinary Flavors says
I love Asian and this seafood dish looks absolutely perfect for me Bobbi!
Maggie | Omnivore's Cookbook says
This is a beautiful recipe and thanks for reminding me to use jiao bai! I saw them every time when I was shopping at the veggie market but never attempted to buy them! I thought it's such a Chinese thing and looks too unfamiliar to most of people. Great recipe, I'd like to try out soon! 🙂
I never had tried this wild rice stem, does it taste like bamboo shoots or is it better? looks very interesting, I have to hunt for this one
Healthy World Cuisine says
Hello Raymond, Wild rice stem has a very mild flavor and is delicately sweet and cooling. I don't think it is as hard as regular fresh bamboo that needs to be boiled. However it is very fresh and crisp and really makes the stir fry special.
Quick, easy and healthy - what could be better?
Abbe @ This is How I Cook says
I love water chestnuts but I've never seen these. Will have to look for them at the local market. Great, simple dish!
OK this looks awesome! i love your advice to keep things simple - I do feel extra pressure this time of year to go above and beyond.
Looks amazing! Would love to try this!
LOL on clucking, Bam haha!! Now I'm scared to "cluck" and I love this stir fry dish with these simple, refreshingly sweet flavours! Just exactly what I need, thank you!!!
Julie & Alesah
Gourmet Getaways xx
Hi Bam, never heard of wild rice stems before, sounds very interesting. Love dishes like this, sometimes I need to cut out the carbs for a few days especially after the last few days around here. Thanks!