PAN FRIED NOODLES WITH MIXED SEAFOOD AND SNOW PEAS (for six)
8 ounces fresh thin Chinese egg noodles (shi dan mian, also called Hong Kong noodles; not wonton noodles)
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon dark sesame oil
1 teaspoon Shaoxing rice wine
3 teaspoons cornstarch
½ teaspoon salt
18 medium headless tiger shrimp, shelled and deveined
12 baby squid, tentacles separated, cleaned and cut into ½ inch rings
18 medium scallops
2 large garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 ounce ginger, finely julienned
2 scallions, trimmed and cut into 1 inch pieces
1 cup snow peas, ribs removed
1 medium carrot, peeled and sliced on the diagonal
2 cups unsalted chicken stock
2 tablespoons light soy sauce
3 teaspoons sesame oil
¼ teaspoon sugar
freshly ground black pepper
- Bring 8 cups unsalted water to a boil in a 6 to 8 quart pot, then add noodles, stirring to separate, and cook 1 minute. Drain in a colander and rinse under cold water until the noodles are cool, then shake colander briskly to drain excess water. Scatter on a clean kitchen towel and let dry for 1 hour, then toss the noodles with 1 teaspoon sesame oil.
- Combine Shaoxing, 1 teaspoon cornstarch, and salt in a large bowl. Add seafood and marinate in refrigerator for 1 hour.
- In a 12-inch non-stick skillet, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Tilt the pan and move it around so that the oil coats the bottom. When the oil is hot, add the noodles and push them into the bottom of the pan with a spatula. Cook the noodles until they are golden brown on the bottom, about 6 minutes. Press down on the noodles with a spatula during cooking — this helps form them into a nest shape and makes sure they cook evenly. Rotate the noodle cake with a spatula to brown evenly and lift edges occasionally to check color.
- Flip the noodles frittata-style: Place a plate over the noodles and then invert the pan so that the noodles fall onto the plate, browned side up. (Flip the pancake well away from any open flame. Any oil left in the pan may spill and, if it comes into contact with a flame, catch fire.) Add another tablespoon of oil to the pan and tilt pan to lightly coat the bottom. Slide the noodles back into the pan. Cook until they are golden brown on the bottom, usually about 5 minutes. Again, press down lightly on the noodles during cooking. (The exact cooking time may vary depending on the type and even the brand of noodle that you are using. If, after browning both sides, the noodles aren’t quite as crisp as you like, you can fry either side for a bit longer, but you shouldn’t need to add extra oil to the pan.) Transfer drained noodle cake to a platter and loosely cover with foil to keep warm.
- Heat the remaining tablespoon of oil in to wok or large skillet over high heat. Stir-fry the garlic, ginger and scallions until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the shrimp, squid, and scallops and continue to stir-fry until cooked through, about 3 minutes. Add the snow peas and carrots and stir fry for another minute or 2, just until carrot is crisp-tender. Spoon mixture onto center of noodle cake.
- Bring stock, light soy sauce, remaining 2 tablespoons sesame oil and sugar to a boil in wok. Season with pepper. Dissolve remaining 2 teaspoons cornstarch in 1 tablespoon water, add to stock, and stir for 1 minute. Pour over stir-fry and noodles.
NOTE: To transform this dish into an elegant first course, cook 6 individual crispy noodle cakes in a small nonstick skillet following instructions, and top each with some of the seafood and sauce.
adapted from Corinne Trang, Noodles Every Day