5 super easy, heaps tasty, fried noodle dishes.Straya! It’s really close to Asia. Have you been to Bali too? (We have not, just between you and me, but it’s on the list).
We are gifted with migrants from many different parts of the globe and, arguably, our cuisine is influenced most by the folks from this continent In Brisbane we are blessed w/ Thai, Vietnamese, Chinese and Japanese dining options out the wazoo. Indonesian is no slouch either. (Apologies to our sub-continental friends, we’ll get to you another time.) And what once required a trip to West End , Darra or Sunnybank is now available far more widely.
Kid and I will be putting together some lovely noodle recipes for you over the course of a few (probably not consecutive) weeks. Comfort food with chopsticks.Today we start in Singapore with a home-style version of a street food classic. We’ve replaced curry powder with fresh turmeric, curry leaves, white pepper and cardamom to give some fresh flavours and keep it home-spun. If your in a jam however, curry powder gives a good result too.
It may seem like a lot of ingredients, and you will be well rewarded. Or, as with many hawker style dishes like this it’s pretty easy to go down the ‘whatever’s in the pantry’ ethos and use what’s at hand too.Singapore Noodles w/ Prawns
Ingredients – serves 2-3
150g dried rice noodles
400g green prawns – shelled, de-veined, tails on. Reserve the shells.
2 golden shallots – sliced thin
4 garlic cloves – crushed
50g fresh turmeric – peeled
1 red capsicum – thin slices
2 eggs – beaten and cooked into a thin omelette. Sliced
1 cup sugar snap peas – de-stringed
1 cup bean sprouts
1 tsp ground white pepper
1 tbsp ketchup manis
1/2 cup fresh curry leaves
10 cardamom pods – lightly crushed
2 tbsp coconut or peanut oil.
1 tsp sesame oil
Coriander sprigs and lime wedges to serve.HOW
Grate half of the turmeric ( a microplane is a great advantage here) and place in a bowl with about 1-2 litres of boiling water. Let this stand until it’s close to room temperature. Strain the turmeric stock over your rice noodles. Leave them fully submerged for 30 minutes. Drain well. The noodles will have the aroma of fresh turmeric. Toss the noodles with the sesame oil and refrigerate. If the water is too hot when the noodles go in, they will not stand up to the heat of cooking. While you’re waiting for the stock to cool is a great time for your other preparation work.In a hot fry pan or wok, place the prawn shells, curry leaves and cardamom. Dry roast them until the prawn shells go red and the spices are aromatic. Next add the coconut oil and continue to stir for a good couple of minutes.
Now remove the leaves, shells and cardamom and discard. The idea is that the oil in your pan is now well seasoned by these ingredients.Add the shallots and garlic and cook until tender, stirring all the while. Now add prawns and toss until a hint of orange happens but the prawns are still translucent. Next stir in the capsicum and peas and cook until the capsicum is tender. It is important to keep the pan hot and the ingredients moving. Next grate the remaining turmeric into the pan. If you cook the prawns for too long they will have an unpleasant texture. Add the bean sprouts and cook for a few seconds. Now stir in your noodles and chopped omelette. Combine well. Season with white pepper, a pinch of salt and finally the ketchup manis. Remove from the heat. Serve whilst piping hot with coriander sprigs and fresh lime wedges.What Kid Did
Today Kids’ first job was shelling the prawns. It’s a fairly messy, slightly smelly affair so best done in or at least, very near to, the sink.Any excess prawn shells are best wrapped in plastic and stored in the freezer until bin night. This was a ritual in my own family home as a kid. There were always, crab or prawn shells or fish scraps waiting in the freezer until bin night. Cracking and scrambling eggs, peeling the turmeric, picking coriander, peeling the peas and keeping the dogs out of the kitchen. Having Kid help out really makes light work of that long ingredient list.
To get the fresh turmeric of your fingers I recommend lemon juice and warm water. Or wearing a glove
Stay tuned for more noodle action from us in the coming weeks.