Fried Taiwan noodles

20141114-195403-71643112.jpgIt is a cool evening, heralding the beginning of fall with the leaves rewarding with sights of yellow and orange and red everywhere we turn. Cool weather needs foods that bring comfort. In this all-in-one dinner recipe that was made with available ingredients in the fridge, ginger is added for its warming effect. For the noodles, any white wheat noodles will do. I prefer Hsin Tung Yang’s guan miao noodles.

1/2 lb chicken, cubed
1 tbsp all-purpose flour
1 tsp garlic, minced or finely chopped
1 tbsp shallots, sliced thinly
1/2 tbsp ginger, finely chopped
2 small or 1 medium sized carrots, cubed
1 tsp oyster sauce
2 skeins Taiwan (white) noodles, cooked according to instructions

1 tsp light soy sauce
1/2 tsp chinese cooking wine
2-3 drops sesame oil
2 dashes white pepper

Serves 2

Marinate chicken for 10 minutes. Coat well with flour. Set aside.
Heat oil and sauté garlic, shallots and ginger till fragrant.
Add chicken and stir quickly , turning over cubes evenly.
When chicken is nearly cooked, add carrots and sauté well.
Stir in oyster sauce.
Add cooked noodles. Avoid adding the liquid from the noodles to the wok.
Toss thoroughly and serve.
Add a dash of soy sauce to taste if needed.

Lately, I am experimenting with pork fat. I sneaked in a couple of pieces along with the ginger, shallots and ginger. After adding the noodles, I felt we needed more veggies since I had not prepared a separate dish of vegetables. So I added a handful of frozen mixed vegetables that I had on hand. At the last minute, I spied my bottle of hay bee hiam (Nonya fried shrimp) which my family loves on a cool evening, and added a tbsp of that toward the end of the cooking as well.

Lemongrass ginger patties

These patties are easy to make and keep well for a week in the fridge. Plum, ripe tomatoes add a shot of sweetness and juiciness to the otherwise dry patties. Turkey or chicken can be used to replace red meat; adjust seasoning to make up for the milder taste.

1 lb ground beef or ground pork
1/4 tsp turmeric
2 tbsp garlic, minced
2 tbsp lemongrass, minced
1/2 cup shallots, minced
2 tbsp ginger, minced
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cayenne powder
1/4 cup ripe tomatoes, finely chopped (optional)

Makes 20 small patties, or 12 large patties

Place the meat in a bowl stir in turmeric.
Pound (or use a food processor) to combine the lemongrass, garlic, shallots, ginger, and salt into a rough paste. Add tomatoes and pound to mix well. Add the paste to the meat and mix ingredients well.
Shape the mixture into 1″ balls, flattening gently to form patties.
Add patties into heated oil on medium-high heat. Fry for 1 – 2 minutes in each side till golden.

Tip: Keep ingredients mostly dry before mixing and pounding to prevent patties from being too wet during frying. If it does happen, increase heat to allow liquid to evaporate during frying.

Adapted from Lemon-ginger Patties by Nicholas on Food52

Foochow ang chow chicken(红糟鸡)

A traditional foochow (福州 Fúzhōu) dish made using the by-product that is collected when fermenting red rice wine or ang chow (红糟). Ang chow can be purchased in asian grocery stores. It is believed to be beneficial for women in confinement (the month after childbirth in chinese culture). It is traditionally served over mee sua (white noodles), symbolizing long life. I serve it over rice to soak up all the sauces. Ginger is crucial in this dish, I recommend adjusting the amount depending on whether you are using young or old ginger.

1 kg chicken thighs/wings/drumsticks
4 tbsp ang chow (red rice wine dregs)
Handful dried shitake mushrooms, soaked and softened (reserve some of the water)
Handful black fungus (‘Jew’s Ear’), soaked and softened
Ginger, sliced or thinly grated
Garlic, minced
150 ml rice wine (optional)
Sesame oil
Salt/Sugar to taste

Serves 6

Fry ginger and garlic in sesame oil till fragrant.angchow2
Add ang chow on medium heat and stir till aromas are released.
Increase heat and add chicken. Cook and coat well in ang chow.
Add rice wine according to preference, and some soy sauce to taste.
Add mushrooms and fungus.
Add some water to cover about 1/3 of the chicken.
Bring to a boil, then simmer for 20 minutes.
Add soy sauce/sugar if accordingly if necessary.

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