February 2, 2011

Chinese New Year is just around the corner.  YAY!  I love CNY.  Feb 3 is Chinese New Year Day 1.  I want to go out and have a great dinner and celebrate.  Too bad it has been like snowing forever in NY.  The damn snow never stops. LOL.  I am definitely planning to make a big dinner on Chinese New Year Day 2.  Well, I need to be a vegetarian for Day 1 according to my family’s tradition.  I would probably make a traditional vegetarian dish with Chinese hair vegetable.  And Day 2, I will have a huge dinner.  So today, I made something lighter.  I wanted to grill some eggplant.  But look at my grill.  It is so buried in the snow. My propane tank is completely buried. That’s probably like 20 inches of snow on my deck.  So I tried making grilled eggplant with the broiler.  It works very well.  I pan fried the eggplant a little bit before putting it in the broiler for 10 mins or so.  It was easy to make.  I have been eating clean so that I can eat a ton of food for CNY.  HAHAHAHAHA.

My grill is buried
Briefly pan fried eggplant
Grill eggplant with the broiler
Grilled Eggplant

Ingredients (Serves 2 as side dish):

  • Eggplant, 1 big one if you get it from a American grocery store.  (2 or 3 eggplants if you are using the longer and smaller Chinese eggplants)
  • Oyster sauce, 1 tsp
  • Soy sauce, 1 tsp
  • Olive oil, ½ tsp
  • Water, 1 Tbsp
  • Sesame oil, a few drops (optional)

 

Steps:

  1. Slice eggplant into thin slices (less than 1 cm wide)
  2. Use a large frying pan. Spray non-stick cooking oil on it.  Use high heat. Put eggplant slices on the pan. Let them cook untouched for 2 or 3 mins. Then flip over to cook the other side for another 2 or 3 mins.   Turn off the heat.
  3. Use a non-stick baking tray, transfer eggplant slices to the tray.  Lay them out in a single layer. Spray a little bit of cooking oil on the top of the eggplant.  Turn on the broiler (which is the top heat coil). Let it broil for 10-12 mins or until the surface of the eggplant is browned a little bit.
  4. To make the sauce, combine oyster sauce, soy sauce, olive oil, water and sesame oil in a bowl. Mix them well.
  5. When the eggplant is done, drizzle the sauce over the eggplant. Serve hot.

One of my new year resolutions is definitely to lose weight and eat healthier.  A few of my friends are trying the clean eating stuff, which means no dairy, no red meat.   I don’t know if I can do that since I’m such a meat lover, but I certainly want to try eating more veggie.  I made vegetable fried rice the other day cos I didn’t have any meat at home.  It has been snowing so much in NY, and I kind of stuck at home for days and didn’t get a chance to go grocery shopping.  But the dish turned out really yummy.  I didn’t feel deprived.  I’m going to make it a few more times.  Plus, it does fit into the clean eating rules. 

Cook veggie first
Add celery, mushrooms, rice and egg
Mix everything well
Vegetable Fried Rice - not too shabby

Ingredients (Serves 2 as side dish or 1 as main dish for a hungry man):

  • Cooked brown rice, 2 cups
  • Soy beans, 1 cup
  • Sweet corn, ½ cup
  • Celery, 2 stalk
  • Carrot, 2 stalk
  • Mushrooms, 5 or 6
  • Onion, ½
  • Garlic, 1 clove
  • Egg, 1
  • Oyster sauce, 1 tsp (you can use the vegetarian oyster sauce if you are a vegetarian)
  • Soy sauce, 1 tsp
  • Chinese cooking wine, 1 tsp
  • Salt, a dash
  • White pepper, a dash
  • Sesame oil, a few drops (optional)

 

Steps:

  1. Peel and cut carrots into small cubes, like 1 cm long. Put it aside.
  2. Cut celery into small cubes.  Put it aside.
  3. Cut mushrooms into slices.  Put it aside.
  4. Cut onion into small dices. Put it aside.
  5. Finely chop garlic.  Put it aside.
  6. Use a large frying pan, spray non-stick cooking oil on it.  Use high heat, cook carrots first.  Let it cook for 2 or 3 minutes. 
  7. Add soy beans, onion and garlic.  Mix it well.  Add cooking wine.  Cook it for 2 or 3 minutes.
  8. Add celery, sweet corn, mushrooms, and rice.  Mix everything well.  If the rice is too hard, add a tablespoon of water.
  9. Dig a hole in the middle of the rice.  Add the egg.  Buried the egg with some rice.  Let it cook for 30 seconds or so before mixing it.
  10. Add soy sauce, oyster sauce, and white pepper. Mix it all well.
  11. Taste it.  Add a dash of salt if needed.  Add sesame oil if desire.

I have been liking the new McDonald’s banana and strawberry smoothie.  It was yummy but I don’t know how much sugar it has.  A customer was asking a staff at McDonald if they put any sugar in it.  The staff said no.  But you can’t really trust them.  Starbucks also have banana and strawberry smoothie.  I haven’t tried theirs but I did look at the ingredients.  They were basically banana and strawberries plus some protein powder.  Of course, they charge you a lot for that.  I thought I could try that at home.  It should be a no brainer, right?  I put a very ripe banana, 5 or 6 strawberries, fat free milk all in a blender.  Touch the button for a few seconds.  Da da… a wonderful shake was done.  It filled me up for like 3 hours or so.  Not bad especially when this shake can be made in 5 minutes. It was great as a quick snack on a busy day.  I made this shake a few times now as a lunch substitute when I was super busy.  I added some protein powder in it, and it would fill me up longer for 4 hours or so.  For a busy day, I would have the shake as a light lunch around 12:30pm or 1pm, and make an early dinner around 5:30pm or 6pm, regular food of course. 

Ingredients (serve 1):

  • Banana, 1
  • Strawberries, 5 or 6
  • Milk, 1 cup (I used fat free, you can use skimmed 1% or 2% if you prefer)
  • Ice cubes, 4
  • Whey protein powder, 1 scoop (Optional if you are making it as a meal substitute.  You can get protein powder from any nutrient supplement stores. Each bottle of protein powder comes along with a scoop)

 

One banana and a few strawberries
Add banana, strawberries, milk + protein powder. Blend everything.
Banana and Strawberry Smoothie. super yummy!

Steps:

  1. Use a big blender.  Peel and break banana into 3 or 4 pieces, and put them in the blender.
  2. Rinse the strawberries, and cut each in halves.  Add them to the blender.
  3. Add milk, protein powder and ice cubes all in the blender.
  4. Use the “ice crush” setting, and blend the whole thing for half a minute or so.  That’s it.  Serve cold.  Enjoy.

I saw the bitter melon in the Chinese grocery store the other day, and that reminded me that I haven’t made bitter melon for ages. I have almost forgotten about it.  Dishes like Stir Fried Bitter Melon with Beef/Chicken, Stir Fried Bitter Melon with Eggs are very common home made dishes.  Unfortunately, you can’t find it from most Chinese restaurants in US.  I have a like and hate thing for bitter melon.  It tastes yummy and yet I don’t like it to be too bitter.  LOL.  A little bit bitter taste is OK.  My mom pre-cooked the bitter melon in a pot of water to get rid of some bitterness first before she stir-fried it, which turned out to be perfect for me.  I could taste a little bit bitterness, and not too much.  But some people can tolerate more bitterness like my sister or my landlady back in my college days.  My sister would add bitter melon with a pear and juice them together. It is a very healthy drink since bitter melon has tons of calcium, potassium, beta-carotene, vitamins etc.  I tried her invention once.  I almost puked.  Hehehehehhehe…  I couldn’t take the bitterness of the raw bitter melon.  My landlady from Laos would just eat the bitter melon raw like an apple. It was amazing how others can tolerate a wider range of taste.

Bitter Melon
Cut bitter melon in halves
Optionally blanch bitter melon to get rid of some bitterness
Cut bitter melon into thin slices
Cook meat first, then add bitter melon and seasoning
Stir fried bitter melon

Note if you skip the meat, this can be a yummy vegetarian dish by itself.

Ingredients:

  • Bitter melon, 1 (the one I bought was about 12-14 inches long)
  • Meat, 1/3 pound (you can use chicken or beef.  I probably used less than 1/3 of ground beef)
  • Black bean sauce, ½ tsp
  • Oyster sauce, 1 tsp
  • Garlic, 1 clove
  • Chinese cooking wine, 1 tsp
  • Cornstarch, 1 tsp
  • Water, 5 Tbsp
  • Sugar, ½ tsp

 

Steps:

  1. Cut bitter melon in halves.  Get rid of the seeds and the white pith with a spoon.  The white pith has stronger bitterness.  In my case, I cleaned it so well. LOL.
  2. Optional: Do this if you like mild bitterness like me.  Boil a small pot of water.  When the water boils, put the cleaned bitter melon in the pot. Use high heat. Let it cook for 2 or 3 minutes.  Drain it well.
  3. Cut bitter melon into thin slices.  Put it aside.
  4. Finely chop garlic.  Put it aside.
  5. Cut meat into thin slices or you can use ground meat like I did. Either one is fine.  Put it aside.
  6. In a small bowl, mix cornstarch with water.  Mix it well. Put it aside.
  7. Spray cooking oil in a frying pan.  Use high heat.  Add chopped garlic, bean sauce to the pan.  Mix it well and let cook for 10 seconds or so.
  8. Add meat to the pot.  Stir fry it for a few minutes till it is cooked.
  9. Add bitter melon to the pot.  Mix it well.  Add Chinese cooking wine, sugar, and oyster sauce. Mix it well.
  10. Add cornstarch mixture to the pot.  Let it cook for a minute or so or until the sauce thickens.  Serve hot.

What a week! Busy, busy.  People were sending me email late at night and telling me that this and that was urgent.  I am also struggling with finishing the school assignment.  It was really crazy.  I got about 35 minutes for lunch today.  I usually would make ramen noodles when I was in a rush.  Today I made Pan Fried Tofu with some veggie instead.  I was trying cut back on the starch.  Tofu with veggie is probably the most simple and bland food ever.  Tofu itself doesn’t have much taste.  But a bland dish like this is good for complementing a meat or a spicy dish.  I am eating this to be healthier and cut down the amount of meat and starch.  Ya, I’m trying to lose weight.  Since the dish is so simple, and the ingredients are pretty cheap, I don’t usually order it at a restaurant because I would feel that I got ripped off or something.  LOL.  But one time I did order this dish when I had dinner with my vegetarian friend.  I ordered some meat dishes for myself and couple veggie dishes for her.  I forgot the exact name of the dish on the menu.  It could be just called something like Steamed Tofu and Chinese Vegetable.  When the dish came, it had a few pieces of tofu, and couple of veggie, and some soy sauce poured over the dish.  That was it.  And they charged like $15 for a simple, inexpensive dish like this just because we ate at a fancy Chinese restaurant!  Really, what a rip off!  I could have made the same dish at home for less than $2.  My vegetarian friend felt bad since it was my treat.  It was alright, I did enjoy the dish. The tofu was silken. The veggie was yummy, and soy sauce was nice with a slight sweetness.  Plus the company, priceless!  I kind of made the same dish today except I pan fried it instead of steamed it.

Cut tofu and pat dry each piece
Cut tofu and pat dry each piece
Pan fry tofu for 5 mins each side
Pan fry tofu for 5 mins each side
Pan Fried Tofu with Bok Choy
Pan Fried Tofu with Bok Choy

Ingredients (Serves 2):

  • Tofu, 1 pack medium or soft firm. Don’t get the silken, it will be too soft to pan fry.  (I only made half of the tofu just for myself at lunch)
  • Chinese vegetable, a small bunch (You can use any leafy veggie like Choy Sum.  I used baby Bok Choy)
  • Garlic Powder, a dash
  • Salt, a dash
  • Soy sauce, 1 tsp
  • Oyster sauce, 1 tsp
  • Sugar, ¼ tsp
  • Cornstarch, 5 Tbsp

 

Steps:

  1. Wash the veggie for couple of times.  Drain and put it aside.
  2. Prepare the sauce:  Put soy sauce, oyster sauce and sugar in a bowl. Mix it well. Put it aside.
  3. Cut tofu into thick pieces less than an inch thick.  Use a paper towel to pat dry the tofu.
  4. Put the cornstarch on a plate.  Coat tofu with the cornstarch.
  5. In a non-stick frying pan, spray cooking oil on it.  Use medium heat. Add tofu to the pan. Make sure they don’t touch each other.  Let it cook on one side for 5 to 7 minutes or until it is golden in color.  Flip it over to the other side, and cook it for another 5-7 mins.  Remove it from the pan.  Put it on a serving plate.
  6. Add a little bit oil in the pan.  Put the baby Bok Choy (or other leafy veggie) and stir fry it.  Add a dash of salt and garlic powder. Mix it well.  Cook it for 2 or 3 minutes or until it is cooked.  Remove the veggie from the pan.  Put it on the side of the tofu on the serving plate.
  7. Add some sauce to the tofu.  Serve hot.

I have been grilling a lot.  It’s a summer thing.  I usually grilled a lot meat like steak, chicken, wings, hamburgers, hot dog stuff.  Today I grilled some veggie for a change. Hehehehe.  I want to eat healthy and exercise more.  Tonight, I grilled some shrimp and zucchini.  I like zucchini.  It has a subtle sweetness and it is very juicy.   Zucchini is not a Chinese veggie.  I thought it may taste like a cucumber until a friend introduced it to me back when I was in college.  A Chinese coworker of mine grows zucchini in his garden.  But he doesn’t like it at all.  He gave it away.  Why does he bother to grow it if he and his family don’t like it?  What a weird guy! :p  I usually stir fry it with some garlic and oyster sauce.  Tonight, I decided to put it on the grill together with the shrimp even though I have never grilled any veggie before.  It was easier. I didn’t have to cook two things in two places.  LOL.  That was the lazy me’s logic.  I made an oyster sauce dressing.  It was YUMMY.  This will sure be one of my regular meals.  It only took me like 20 mins or so for fixing the dinner.  Awesome!

 

Peel and slice zucchini
Peel and slice zucchini
Put zucchini on a grill
Put zucchini on a grill
Drizzle sauce to the zucchini when it is cooked
Drizzle sauce to the zucchini when it is cooked
Grilled Zucchini with an Oyster Sauce Dressing
Grilled Zucchini with an Oyster Sauce Dressing

 

Ingredients (serves 2):

  • Zucchini, 2
  • Oyster sauce, 1 Tbsp
  • Soy Sauce, 1 Tbsp
  • Olive oil, 1 Tbsp
  • Sesame oil, a few drops

 Steps:

  1. Prepare the dressing first.  Add oyster sauce, soy sauce, olive oil and a few drops of sesame oil into a small bowl.  Mix it well.  Put it aside.
  2. Peel zucchini.  This is optional.  I prefer it peeled. But just be careful because it is very slippery when it is peeled.
  3. Cut zucchini into big slices, about 1 cm or less in thickness. 
  4. Start the grill.  Put the zucchini slices on the grill.  Let it cook for 5-6 minutes.  Flip it over and cook the other side for another 5-6 minutes or until it softens.  Remove the zucchini from the grill.
  5. Drizzle or mix the sauce with zucchini.  Serve hot.

I came across a video that showed the fancy Wolf Integrated Steamer in the kitchen.  I wish I could afford a Wolf stove. But you know what? As fancy as this steaming device is built into the kitchen, it somehow looks complicated to me.  Steaming doesn’t need to be this complicated.  I’m not a gadget queen.  I stick with very basic pots and pans.  That reminded me that I owe my friend Sally a Steamed Water Egg recipe.  She asked me a few months ago when I just started this blog.  I made this dish last night.  It was a good timing for me to make more steamed dishes cos now I decided to exercise again and get healthy.  I literally translated the name of the Cantonese dish into English.  You can guess that it is a very basic dish – steam the water and egg mixture, that’s pretty much it.  But it is a very authentic and comforting Cantonese dish.  If you add sugar instead of salt to the dish, it’s like the egg custard, which could be a dessert.  I only learned how to make this dish a few years back from my mom.  She was fuzzy about the look of the dish, making sure that there were no bubbles when pouring the egg mixture to the serving plate for steaming….  Mom, I don’t care about these!  LOL.  I made this dish like a dozen of times now.  But I didn’t write down any recipe, so the results were inconsistent.  Sometimes the eggs get too overcooked, sometimes I added too much water,  sometimes the surface got too many bubbles, sometimes the dish was no taste,… So I made the dish again last night and it turned out very good, and I got to write down what I did.  I modified mom’s recipe.  I skipped the “getting rid of the bubbles” step. LOL.  I added some diced scallion on the surface.  The weight of the scallion killed the bubbles.  Pretty smart, right? ;p  The texture was very good too. It was like silken tofu.

Put eggs in a container. Use the eggshell as measuring unit.
Put eggs in a container. Use the eggshell as measuring unit.
Pour egg mixture in a serving bowl
Pour egg mixture in a serving bowl
Put egg mixture in a pot for steaming
Put egg mixture in a pot for steaming
Add soy sauce when it is done
Add soy sauce when it is done
Steamed Water Eggs
Steamed Water Eggs

Ingredients (Serves 2):

  • Large eggs, 3
  • Hon Dashi or chicken powder, 1 tsp (I used Hon Dashi last night. Hon Dashi is a Japanese Fish Stock powder)
  • Scallion, 1 or 2 stalks (optional, it’s perfectly fine if you skip this)
  • Water, 9 units (each unit is a half eggshell)
  • Salt, a dash
  • Cornstarch, ¼ tsp
  • Soy sauce, 1 tsp

 

Steps:

  1. Chop scallion into small dices, put them aside.
  2. We’ll be steaming the dish. You need to prepare a big pot with a lid, and a serving bowl that will fit into the pot.  If you have a fancy steamer, then you’ll all set.  Add sufficient water in the pot.  Boil the water first.
  3. While waiting for the steamer to get reader, prepare the egg mixture.  Use a large bowl or container, break 3 eggs and add them in it.  Save a half eggshell and use it as measuring unit.  For each egg, add 3 half eggshell of water to the container.  So we have 3 eggs here, total of 9 half eggshell of water.
  4. Add Hon Dashi or chicken powder, cornstarch and a very small pinch of salt to the mixture.  Mix it well.  Yes, you’ll see bubbles while mixing it.
  5. Get a shallow serving bowl.  Pour egg mixture to the bowl.  If you are fuzzy about the bubbles of the mixture, you can get rid of them with a spoon.  I didn’t do that cos it didn’t bother me.
  6. Sprinkle scallion dices to the surface of the mixture.  Put it aside.
  7. When the water boils, BE CAREFUL of the heat, put the bowl into the pot.  Cover it with a lid (or a piece of aluminum foil if you don’t find a lid that fits).  Let it steamed for 15 minutes on medium heat.  After 15 minutes is due, turn off the heat.  Let the dish sit in the pot with the lid on for another 5 mins before taking it out.
  8. To check if the dish is cooked or not, run a small knife through the mixture and pull the knife out.   The knife should not have any egg stick to it.
  9. Add a teaspoon of soy sauce to the surface of the dish.  Serve hot.

Sometimes I debate if I should share dishes that are too Chinese. LOL.  A lot of my daily dishes are nothing like General Tso’s chicken or whatever Chop Suey.  Lately I really missed some basic dishes that I grew up with.  I sautéed some mustard greens tonight.  I love mustard greens, so does my cat. LOL.  When I opened a can of tuna, he would care less. But if I got some mustard greens, he would be right in my face.  One time I left a bag of mustard greens on the counter.  He jumped up and put his head in the bag and started chewing. LOL.  He may be attracted by the unique taste of mustard greens. It has a little bit bitter taste and it certainly smells like mustard.  I love Mustard Greens with Salted Egg Soup, Sautee Mustard Greens or even pickled Mustard Greens.  They are all yummy.  I saw a tray of mustard greens at a Chinese Buffet place one day, and I was surprised.  I was like, “they serve this to Americans?”  LOL.  I didn’t know non-Chinese people would like this veggie cos it has a very unique flavor.

Mustard Greens
Mustard Greens
Cut greens into 3 or 4 inches pieces, wash and drain it.
Cut greens into 3 or 4 inches pieces, wash and drain it.
Mustard Greens with Garlic Sauce
Mustard Greens with Garlic Sauce

 

Ingredients (Serves 2):

  • Mustard Greens, 1/3 pound (There are two kinds of mustard greens: one with a thicker stems, and another one with skinner stems.  I used the one with the skinnier stems.  See picture.  Both are good)
  • Garlic, 2 cloves
  • Giinger, 2 slices
  • Chinese cooking wine, 1 tsp
  • Chicken powder, ½ tsp
  • Fish Sauce, 1 tsp
  • Cornstarch, 1 tsp
  • Water, 6 Tbsp

 

Steps: 

  1. Cut mustard greens into about 3 or 4 inches long pieces. 
  2. Must wash the veggie!  Unlike broccoli, or lettuce, leafy veggies like mustard greens may have a lot of soil on the leaves.  Fill a big pot of cold water, and put the mustard greens into the pot and wash it for two times. Drain well.
  3. Finely chop garlic.  Put it aside.
  4. In a small bowl, mix cornstarch and cold water in a bowl.  Put it aside.
  5. In a large frying pan, spray a little bit of oil.  Use high heat. Add garlic and ginger slices.  Let it cook for 30 seconds to release some flavor.
  6. Add mustard greens to the pan.  Mix it well.  Let it cook for a minute. Add chicken powder, fish sauce, and Chinese cooking wine.  Let it cook for couple of  minutes.
  7. Add cornstarch and water mixture to the pot. Mix it well.  Let it cook for a minute until the sauce thickens a bit.  Taste it, add a pinch of salt if needed.

It was a great Friday yesterday. Nothing was urgent at work.  I didn’t screw up anything. LOL.  I made new friend, my cat is recovering, … a lot of things to celebrate.  I stopped by Trader Joe’s and I came across some interesting food.  They have frozen artichokes.  Artichokes are one of those weird looking things that don’t look too edible in my opinion.  It looks like a hybrid between a flower and a veggie.  It shapes like a flower, but green in color!  Very bizarre and intimidating.  A few years ago, my sister bought one artichoke and she wanted to experiment cooking it.  Artichokes are not Chinese vegetables.  We both had no clue.  We could have searched the web to find instructions but we didn’t.  Someone told her to steam it.  She peeled off the rough edges, then trimmed off the tips of each leave.  After steaming it, that thing looked worse. The green color turned brownish.  It was totally not appealing at all. But we had to eat our consequence, literally!  We each peeled off a leave.  I put it in my mouth.  The leave had so much unchewable fiber.  I just kind of sucked the juice a little bit, and discarded it.  It didn’t have much taste either.  I had a few leaves.  She had a few leaves. We tried this experiment, and it sucked.  We threw out the rest.  Guess what?  The next day her Brazilian friend told her that we threw out the most edible part called Artichoke Heart!!  WHAT???  I felt so stupid.  LOL… Now that I found out Trader Joe’s have this, I couldn’t help putting a bag in my basket.  I was debating if I should make it taste more like Chinese or not.  Then I remember I had seen some pasta dishes have artichokes in it. Bingo!  Italian!  Here comes my new experiment: Artichokes hearts with pasta sauce.  It was very yummy. It made a great side dish.  😀

 

Frozen artichoke hearts
Frozen artichoke hearts
Add artichoke, garlic and cooking wine
Add artichoke, garlic and cooking wine
Add pasta sauce to the artichokes
Add pasta sauce to the artichokes
Stir fried Artichoke Hearts
Stir fried Artichoke Hearts

 

Ingredients:

  • Artichoke hearts, 1 bag
  • Garlic, 1 clove (you can use more if you prefer)
  • Pasta sauce, 4 Tbsp
  • Chinese cooking wine, 1 Tbsp (I’m sure you can use any white wine)
  • Salt, a dash

 Steps:

  1. Finely chop garlic.  Put it aside.
  2. In a frying pan, spray cooking oil.  Use medium heat.  Put artichokes in the pan.  Let it cook for 2 mins.  Stir occasionally.  No need to defrost the artichokes ahead of time.
  3. Add garlic to the pan and cooking wine.  Stir fry it for couple of minutes until the artichokes look totally defrosted.
  4. Add pasta sauce.  Mix it well.  Let it cook for another 3 or 4 minutes until the sauce thickens and sticks to the artichokes.  Taste it. You can add more pasta sauce according to your liking.  Add a pinch of salt if needed. 

I really like this idea of doing some detox for now.  I am really thinking that I should stick with my idea of having no meat for breakfast and lunch for couple of weeks and see if I feel lighter. LOL… I love meat and it is difficult for me to go without meat for a whole day, but I can try having meat once a day.  My coworker has followed some detox diet for 3 weeks or a month, and she lost some weight.  I asked her how many pounds she lost, and she didn’t know.  She said she can tell her clothes were loose.  I wish my clothes were loose.  I gained so much weight (plus didn’t exercise for so long) that last year’s clothes are getting tight 🙁  It would be nice if I could lose a few pounds. Hehehhehe.  I made a no meat version of Shanghai Fried Noodles today. Shanghai Fried Noodles that I tried at some Shanghai restaurants usually have meat in it like pork or chicken.  They were tasty. The only thing that I didn’t like was the amount of oil they used. It felt like they put a cup of oil or so.  These days, I cook everything with spray oil.  You know, every little bit counts 🙂  and I’m desperate to lose weight.  Shanghai style noodles are fresh noodles.  You can get them from the refrigerated section of a Chinese grocery store.  They look like Japanese Udon noodles.   I just added whatever I had at home.  Like fried rice, you can be creative and add whatever ingredients you prefer.  I added some fresh shiitaki mushrooms and chives.  It was pretty yummy 🙂

 

Shanghai noodles. They look like Japanese Udon noodles
Shanghai noodles. They look like Japanese Udon noodles
Add mushroom, onion and garlic first
Add mushroom, onion and garlic first
Add shanghai noddles
Add shanghai noddles
Add seasoning and chives
Add seasoning and chives
A no meat version of Shanghai Noodles
A no meat version of Shanghai Noodles

Ingredients (Serves 2):

  • Shanghai Noodles, 1 pack about 16 oz
  • Fresh Shiitaki mushrooms, about 10-15 pieces
  • Chives, a handful (sorry, I didn’t measure)
  • Scallion, 2 stalks
  • Onion, 1
  • Garlic, 2 cloves
  • Dark soy sauce, 1 Tbsp
  • Light soy sauce, 1 tsp
  • Water, 1 Tbsp
  • Chinese cooking wine, 1 Tbsp
  • Sugar, 1 tbsp
  • Sesame oil, 1 tsp
  • Salt, a dash

Steps:

  1. Cut onion into strips, put it aside.
  2. Finely chop the garlic, put it aside
  3. Cut chives into 3-inch length long pieces.
  4. Cut shiitaki mushrooms into strips. Put it aside.
  5. In a large frying pan, spray cooking oil.  Use high heat. Add mushrooms, onion, and garlic. Stir fry it for 2 or 3 minutes.  Add light soy sauce.  Mix it well and fry it for another 2 minutes or so.
  6. Spray a little bit more oil to the pan.  Add noodles.  Fry it for 3 minutes.  Add cooking wine, water, soy sauce and sugar.  Mix it well.  Turn the heat down to medium.  Let it cook for 3 more minutes or cook until the noodles look soft.
  7. Add chives.  Mix it well for 1 minute. Turn off the heat.  Add scallion and sesame oil.  Mix it well.  Serve hot.