Veggie Mu Hsu

Daring Mu-Hsu

Veggie Mu Hsu

How do you properly describe Mu-Hsu?
I can’t say I would have expected to hear the phrase “Chinese fajitas” come out of my mouth, and yet that was how I described this month’s challenge to J.

Mu-Hsu is basically a stir fry (usually containing pork) wrapped inside a wheat flatbread “pancake”. This month’s Daring Cooks’ challenge asked us to make the stir fry, make the pancakes from scratch, as well as a home made Hoisin sauce. For my take on the challenge, I opted to take my usual route and veggify the recipe. If I had some of my homemade seitan on hand, I probably would have used that. Since I didn’t, I grabbed a package of vegetarian chicken strips – a pretty convenient option.

The “pancakes” were the thing that caused me the most grief. It’s my own fault, really – I’m terrible at rolling things out. Unlike the pancakes that we know, these are made of a dough that is rolled out into circles. Again with the comparison to fajitas – you could compare these to wheat tortillas.

Daring Mu-Hsu
Daring Mu-Hsu with home made Hoisin Sauce

The highlight for me was certainly the Hoisin sauce. I’ve seen a few different ingredient lists, so I’m sure there is no single way to make it. All I know is that I never need to buy any again. It’s so easy to make up a batch, and so delicious. This is totally in line with one of my food stocking goals: to limit the number of condiments I buy, and try to make small batches of things as I need it. The key is keeping the right staple ingredients on hand – and this recipe for Hoisin sauce is made up of some of the most common things in my pantry.

Would I make this again?

Yeah, definitely! The stir-fry and hoisin sauce were really easy to make, and very satisfying. The pancakes were the only things I had trouble with, and were the most time-consuming. In a pinch, I could see using some soft wheat tortilla shells, or even serving this over rice. As much of a hassle as the pancakes were while making them, they really made the dish fun – and more interesting than “just” a stir-fry. I can see myself mixing it up a little, and adding more veggies and things.

… and don’t forget to add a squirt of sriracha, for a little extra spice! I forgot to add this when I first made the Mu-Hsu, but added it to my leftovers. AMAZING!

The October Daring Cooks’ Challenge was hosted by Shelley of C Mom Cook and her sister Ruth of The Crafts of Mommyhood. They challenged us to bring a taste of the East into our home kitchens by making our own Moo Shu, including thin pancakes, stir fry and sauce.

Veggie Mu-Hsu

Adapted from The Chinese Kitchen by Deh-Ta Hsiung

Serves 4


  • 2/3 cup dried mushrooms/fungus, preferably ‘wood ears’ (I didn’t have this, so I used dried shiitake.)
  • ½ lb of your favourite veggie protein pieces, shredded (tofu, seitan, vegetarian chicken or pork pieces) (I used veggie chicken strips)
  • 3½ oz bamboo shoots, thinly cut (if using canned, be sure to rinse and drain well)
  • 3 cups Chinese/Napa cabbage, thinly sliced
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 scallions, sliced thin
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons rice wine
  • A few drops sesame oil
  • 12 thin pancakes, to serve
  • Hoisin Sauce, to serve


  1. Soak the mushroom/fungus in warm water for 10-15 minutes, rinse and drain. Discard any hard stalks, then thinly shred.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon  oil in a preheated wok and scramble the eggs until set, but not too hard. Remove and keep to one side.
  3. Heat the remaining oil. Stir-fry the veggie protein for about 1 minute or until lightly browned on the outside. Add the mushroom/fungus, bamboo shoots, cabbage and scallions. Stir-fry for about 2-3 minutes, then add the remaining salt, soy sauce and wine. Blend well and continue stirring for another 2 minutes. Add the scrambled eggs, stirring to break them into small bits. Add the sesame oil and blend well.
  4. To serve: place about 2 tablespoons (30 ml) of hot Mu-Hsu in the center of a warm pancake, top with some Hoisin Sauce, then roll into a parcel with the bottom end turned up to prevent the contents from falling out. Eat with your fingers.

Thin Pancakes

Adapted from The Chinese Kitchen by Deh-Ta Hsiung

Makes 24-30 pancakes


  • 2 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour (plus more, for dusting)
  • 3/4 cup boiling water (more, as needed)
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil


  1. Sift the flour into a mixing bowl. Gently pour in the water, stirring as you pour, then stir in the oil. Knead the mixture into a soft but firm dough. If your dough is dry, add more water, one tablespoon at a time, to reach the right consistency. Cover with a damp towel and let stand for about 30 minutes.
  2. Lightly dust the surface of a worktop with dry flour. Knead the dough for 6-8 minutes or until smooth, then divide into 2 equal portions. Roll out each portion into a long sausage and cut each sausage into 6 pieces. Keep the dough that you are not actively working with covered with a lightly damp dish cloth to keep it from drying out.
  3. Roll each piece into a ball, then, using the palm of your hand, press each piece into a flat pancake. Dust the worktop with more dry flour. Flatten each pancake into a 6 to 8 inch circle with a rolling pin, rolling gently on both sides.
  4. Place an un-greased frying pan over high heat. Once the pan is hot, lower the heat to low and place the pancakes, one at a time, in the pan. Remove when little light-brown spots appear on the underside. Cover with a damp cloth until ready to serve.

Hoisin Sauce

Modified from this recipe on


  • 2 tablespoons natural smooth peanut butter
  • 4 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 teaspoons white vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • ground cayenne pepper (or other hot pepper or sauce), to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  1. Start by mixing half of the soy sauce into the peanut butter, to make it a bit thinner and easier to work with. It will look lumpy at first – almost curdled – but keep stirring and it will come together. (I find a small fork works really well for this step).
  2. Once the peanut butter and soy sauce have come together into a smooth paste, add the remaining soy sauce and mix completely. You should now have a smooth, thick sauce that will easily mix with the remaining ingredients.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients and mix until the sauce is smooth, and consistent. Taste, and add more cayenne or black pepper as needed.

11 thoughts on “Daring Mu-Hsu”

  1. I am so glad that you enjoyed this!! I was actually quite surprised at how easy it is to make homemade hoisin sauce. You did a beautiful job. Thank you so much for cooking with us this month!

  2. We added Sriracha too. It seems to go with everything. And again with the wonderful-looking sauce. I’m definitely regretting that I didn’t have time to do it.

  3. I think chinese fajitas is a great way to describe this!
    I totally agree with you, the pancakes were the most troublesome part but all in all it was a challenge worth going through and you did an amazing job at it

  4. I am so glad you enjoyed this challenge! I would love to have your homemade seitan – I bet that was fabulous in the moo shu…! I, too, had trouble with the pancakes, but it was quite satisfying to know that we have now done something that goes even a step beyond what you’ll get at the restaurants. Great work, and thank you for cooking with us!

  5. What a beauty of a vegetarian moo shu prep – it looks delicious. Fantastic photos of it too, so clear and sharp. I feel as if I can grab the moo shu out from one! (I wish!)

Comments are closed.