Sunday, November 9, 2014

Chinese Curried Noodles

Need a recipe using the Fresh Chinese Noodles from a couple of days ago? Here you go! This is an easy stir fry that becomes a delicious saucy dish. Comes together in no time. If you have some fresh noodles stashed in the freezer, you can make dinner appear in about 15 minutes. It will taste better than anything you could find in a box or jar.

There are a couple of important general cooking facts in here:

  1. Cook the curry in oil to release its fragrance. If you add it with a bunch of liquid, this won't happen and the flavor won't be as good.
  2. Cornstarch needs to boil to activate the starches that do the thickening, so make sure you boil your sauce. Good to know for any cornstarch thickened sauce.

Chinese Curried Noodles
(serves 4 to 6)

1 pound ground meat (beef, pork, lamb, chicken, or turkey)
2 Tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon + 1 ½ Tablespoons vegetable oil
1 onion, chopped
2 Tablespoons curry powder

2 cups no or low salt chicken stock
3 ½ Tablespoons soy sauce
1 ½ teaspoons sugar
¼ teaspoon black pepper
1 ½ Tablespoons cornstarch

1 8 oz. can sliced water chestnuts, drained
1 ½ cups frozen peas or shelled edamame, thawed

1 pound fresh Chinese noodles (or ¾ pound dried fettuccine or linguine pasta)

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil.

While it's heating up, combine the ground meat with the 2 Tablespoons soy sauce. Combine all the sauce ingredients in a medium bowl and set aside.

Heat a wok or deep skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 teaspoon of oil. Add the meat and stir fry until it is no longer pink, stirring to break up big lumps. Remove the meat to a clean bowl using a slotted spoon. If there is a lot of fat in the pan, pour it off and discard. If you are using chicken or turkey, there will be almost none.

Return the pan to high heat. Add 1 ½ Tablespoons vegetable oil. Add the onions and stir fry for 4 minutes until soft. Add the curry powder and stir fry until you can smell the curry, about 10 seconds. Stir the sauce to dissolve the cornstarch (it settles to the bottom on standing) and add to the pan. Add the water chestnuts and peas. Stir. Bring to a boil, add the meat, and reduce to a simmer. Add more salt if needed.

Cook the fresh noodles for 1-2 minutes (7-9 if using dried) until just done. Drain and add to the sauce. To serve, put noodles in a bowl with some of the sauce spooned on top.

Reheats well in the microwave.

Adapted from Asian Noodles by Nina Simonds, William Morrow and Company, Inc., 1997.

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