Unlike Indian food which takes time to cook, noodles and stir fry dishes are quick and easy. They are usually light and nutritious one-dish meals which make cooking a breeze.
There are numerous varieties of noodle and stir-fry dishes.
Here is a vegetarian recipe for a traditional hawker rice noodle dish, which is usually cooked with cockles, prawns and Chinese sausage.
It has a vibrant blend of Chinese sauces and Indian chilli paste and a squeeze of lemon juice at the end and so is quite interesting to the palate as it has the balance of the sweet, sour, hot and salty.
The second dish is a favourite stir fry amongst children especially when the meat is deep fried. I, however, usually grill the meat in the oven for a healthier version.
Add vegetables to the stir-fry and serve on rice and you would be surprised to see how your children devour it.
For vegetarians, use firm tofu as a substitute to meat and I guarantee you that the dish is equally quick and delicious!
Note: The recipes serve 4-6 people.
Vegetarian Char Kway Teow
1 kg packet of fresh flat rice noodles (available at most Asian Grocery shops)
2 bunches of Choy Sum (mustard greens) – sliced (both stem and leaves)
1 cup of sliced mushrooms
1 cup of shredded carrot
1 cup bean sprouts
1 cup of sliced firm fried tofu
2-3 fresh chillies or 2-3 tbsp of chilli paste
4 cloves of garlic – chopped
1 red onion – sliced
2-3 tbsp dark soy sauce
2-3 tbsp sweet soy sauce
A dash of sesame oil
2 tsp of salt
2 tbsp cooking oil
A couple of limes/lemons
Chopped chives/spring onions to garnish
Heat some oil in a wok and stir fry the onions till cooked
Add the minced garlic and stir before adding the chilli paste
Add salt to taste and stir until the oil is released from the paste
Add the mushrooms and carrots and stir for a minute or two
Add the noodles and stir until well mixed
Add the dark and sweet soy sauce and mix through
Add the choy sum and stir for a minute or two until the greens are cooked
Add the tofu and bean sprouts and stir well
Add a dash of sesame oil, stir and taste
Sprinkle with lemon juice and chopped chives before serving hot
Tamarind Chicken with Vegetables
1kg of cubed chicken breast or nibbles (or use ready fried firm tofu for a vegetarian dish)
1 tsp of salt
1 tsp of turmeric powder
1 tbsp of cornflour (if deep frying)
Marinate the chicken pieces with turmeric and salt for about 10-15 minutes. If deep frying, coat the chicken pieces lightly with cornflour and deep fry until cooked and golden. For a healthier option, grill the chicken pieces in the oven. Lay the pieces on a baking tray lined with aluminium foil and spray some oil and grill on high for about 15-20 minutes, turning the pieces once so that they are evenly golden. Set aside when cooked.
I large red onion
6 cloves of garlic
1 piece of 2 cm knob of ginger
3-4 fresh red chillies
Peel the onion, garlic and ginger and together with the chillies place in a chopper and grind to a coarse paste. Set aside.
1 tbsp light soy sauce
1 tbsp dark soy sauce
1 tbsp sweet soy sauce
2 tbsp tamarind paste
a dash of sesame oil
2 tbsp cooking oil
Vegetables and Garnish
1 cup of sugar snaps or snow peas (whole)
1 cup of sliced red and yellow capsicum
1 cup of chopped coriander leaves/spring onions
Roasted sesame seeds or cashews
Heat oil in a wok and stir fry the spice paste for a couple of minutes until fragrant
Add the cooked chicken pieces and stir
Add the light, dark and sweet soy sauce and tamarind paste and stir through
Add the vegetables and cook for a minute or two until vegetables are cooked but crunchy
Add a dash of sesame oil before removing from flame and garnish with herbs and roasted sesame seeds or cashews
Serve hot with rice.
Disclaimers: Geetha Nair and Indian Newslink absolve themselves of any responsibility relating to the ingredients, cooking methods and other matters relating to ‘Geet’s Kitchen’ column. Some ingredients may not be available and may cause allergy in some people. Caution must therefore be exercised and Geetha Nair and Indian Newslink will not be responsible to any health issues in this connection. Please consult your General Practitioner, Nutritionist or such others you may be consulting in connection with your dietary requirements.
Notes and Legends: 1. Quantities of sugar and salt are recommendations; please add or reduce to suit individual requirements 2. Tsp: Teaspoon Tbsp: Tablespoon