04 January 2009

lunch at my aunt's, part 2

i'm back from tainan. 5 wonderful days with amazing people and of course amazing food. but let's jump to last year for a moment because i want to finish the lunch I had at my aunt's.

First up, a "pancake" made up of noodles. that's the best way to describe it - cooking noodles so you eat it in slices rather than twirled around a fork. the noodles used are called "麵線" (mian4 xian4), which is a type of rice noodle.

the noodles, which are flexible when dry and not stiff at all. plus they are a lovely white color.

you place it in hot water until they are soft. this is very quick step as it takes only 2 to 3 minutes until they are soft. you don't want to let them stay too long or they will turn into mush.

let it cool.

then, transfer all of the noodles as one big mass to a wok and spread it out evenly.

remember the broth from my previous post? scoop some of it up and start adding it to the noodle mass around the edges. let it cook for a few minutes...

and flip it over! oops, a bit burnt - but that's okay, i'm always a fan of the burnt taste. let the other side cook as well.

and flip! this is what the perfect color looks like. cut like a pizza and eat. yum!

Next, a squid side dish.

slice up a giant mushroom.

wash your broccoli and let it soak.

carefully score diagnoal lines on the inside of the squid one way, and then score more lines the other way so you get a diamond pattern. then chop into pieces.

stir fry it all together and you have a delicious dish!

yet another soup, a squidball soup.

put your frozen squidballs into a pot of hot water.

chop up some wood ear mushroom (木耳/mu4 er3)

slice your tofu in a gridlike pattern while it's still in the package.

and when you pour it out, it falls as lots of cubes!

add in some sea jelly and pork. and finished! and I did leave the kitchen for a bit, so I'm sure other liquid was added for flavor because it can't be all water...

lastly, a veggie side.

slice some carrots thinly.

slice some cloves of garlic.

sautee the carrots and garlic first.

add in the green beans

and finished!

conclusion: the noodles were definitely my favorite. i'm set on recreating it when i get back to the states. it had a perfect combination of crispy, crunchy, and chewy - my weakness in food are opposites that work perfectly when put together. and i love watching others cook in person - there really is no better way to learn about food as well as connect to people all at the same time.

1 comment:

joanh said...

that is so cool. i've never seen rice noodle cooked like that, but i'll definitely have to try it sometime!