Crispy Noodles (Vince's Favorite)Edit
These are my FAVORITE noodles. Mom would always have a batch ready whatever time I arrived home from Cornell or Stonybrook. They are sort of an Asian stir fry version of frito chili pie. It is a delicious savory sauce over a cripsy bed of fried egg noodles. This dish is what Siracha was invented for. As an alternate (I guess more authentic) garnish, you can also use pickled hot peppers.
"Mei Krop" is just Lao for crispy noodle which is how it was referred to in my family. They may appear as Mee Krop or some other phonetic variation on a Thai menu. It is actually a Chinese dish & if you order it in a (real) Chinese restaurant it is usually called "Hong Kong style pan fried noodles." You probably will not find it at a Chinese buffet or Panda House
The sauce is similar to the sauce for Ho Fun and is technically about as difficult as a stirfry. However, the noodles are a bit of a challenge. The upside is that they are cooked in small batches and you can improve by trial and error. Mom's noodles always had a predictable progression. The first ones were always a bit too light, and the last ones were a bit too dark. You just have to show up to the kitchen early to get the best noodles.
If this is your first time trying to cook this, make plenty of extra noodles to fry and have a mop and bucket ready for the oily aftermath. It is recommended that you boil the noodles a few hours ahead of time. If you are using two pans, it takes about an hour to fry one bag of noodles, and about 10 minutes to cook the sauce once all the prep is done.
For the noodles:
- One pound fresh or dried thin wheat noodles.
- The dried version usually says "Canton Style Egg Noodle" on the front, and the noodles are rolled into little football portions.
- 4 Tablespoons of sesame oil (vegetable oil is a reasonable alternative)
- Peanut or Vegetable oil for frying- I have personally found that peanut oil is perferred
For the MarinadeEdit
- 10 oz thinly sliced beef, chicken, shrimp, pork, or cubed extra firm tofu
- 1/2 Cup Chinese Cooking Wine
- 1/2 Tsp Salt
- 2 Teaspoons Sugar
- 2 Tsp Fish Sauce
- 1 Tsp Dark (Mushroom) Soy Sauce
- 2 Tablespoons Water
- 1/2 Tsp Baking Soda (only if using beef)
- 1 Tsp Ground Pepper
For the SauceEdit
- 2 Large Heads of brocolli (or other dark leafy green vegetable) such as Chinese Greens, Bok Choy, or Kale cut into florets or 2 inch pieces
- 1 Medium Onion Cut into Thin Wedges
- 3 Cloves Garlic Minced
- 3 Plum Tomatoes Chopped Coarsely
- Also tasty additions: baby corn, straw mushrooms, blanched carrot slices, bamboo shoots, coarsely chopped red peppers
For Thickening the SauceEdit
- 2 Tsp Oyster Sauce
- 2 Tablespoons Corn Starch
- 4 Cups cold Water
Safety tip: If you do not drain the noodles thoroughly, HOT OIL WILL GO EVERYWHERE!
- Stir Together all the Marinade ingredients and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 15 minutes
- To make the noodles
- If using fresh noodles, omit the next two steps...
- Soak the noodles in cool water until they are somewhat pliable
- Toss the noodles with the sesame oil while they drain thoroughly
- Heat just enough frying oil to cover the bottom of a wok or large frying pan over medium heat until just smoking
- Place a WELL DRAINED handful of noodles (usually about 1/6 of the total amount) in the oil
- If the noodles are not well drained, you and your kitchen will be splashed with hot oil
- With a pair of chopsticks spread them out in a large disc that should be about 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick
- You may also need to swirl them around so they will intertwine and hold together
- Fry until the rapid bubbling has stopped and the noodles have become mostly stiff and slightly brown on the bottom (if you have a small soft spot in the middle, you can get it on the flip side.)
- If the temperature is right and the amount of oil is correct, you should get vigorous frying action and the noodles will be ready to flip in about 3-5 minutes.
- If your oil is too cold or too deep, you will get mediocre frying action that takes longer and your noodles will be a bit chewy and greasy when done
- If your oil is too hot or too shallow, you will have burned noodles on the outside and soft on the inside (I find this is still edible and preferable to problem number #2)
- Flip the noodle disc over and fry the other side- the goal is a disc that holds together and is golden brown and crispy through and through
- Place the noodles on a drying rack or paper towel to allow the oil drain off while cooking the next batch
- Make sure you fish out any left over noodle bits from your oil- they will burn and stick to your next batch
- When done, place all the noodles on a paper towel covered plate or large bowl and cover lightly while preparing the sauce
- Mix the thickening agents in a small bowl and set aside
- Heat 2 tablespoons of oil over medium high heat
- Brown the garlic for about 10 seconds
- Stir in the beef/pork/chicken mixture from the refrigerator
- Cover the wok and cook the meat through
- Turn up the heat and stir in the vegetables- onions, then greens, then tomatoes right at the end
- Thicken the sauce with the cornstarch/oyster sauce mixture
- Add water or rice wine if too dry
- Turn off the heat
- Season to taste
- Plate the noodles
- Pour the sauce over the flat noodles and serve hot!
Flycogen 15:18, February 13, 2011 (UTC)