One of the things I keep meaning to do is to make posts about my cooking methods. Essentially I’m a shortcut cook…I expect most family cooks are. After half a lifetime of reading cookbooks I’ve picked up a trick or two that makes my time in the kitchen easier.
Years ago I picked up an excellent Chinese cookbook, The Key to Chinese Cooking, by Irene Kuo. I’m happy to report it’s still in print. At the time I was studying Chinese art at university, and obsessed with everything Chinese. I learned methods from that cookbook that have stuck with me the rest of my cooking life, such as, using a working platter.
It’s a simple matter to place individual items on a plate or platter in preparation for cooking, and it makes stir-frying much easier. Group ingredients in the order they will be added, on a lightweight plate or platter. If you want to pre-measure liquid ingredients have them to hand as well, in small cups or dishes. Then as you’re stir-frying everything is there.
I marinated the pork for these noodles with soy sauce, sesame oil, and whey drained from my milk kefir cheese. Did you know that whey is a meat tenderiser? It also acts as a natural flavour enhancer. If you don’t make kefir, you can collect some whey from your yogurt container, it’s the clear yellowish liquid that collects where you scooped with your spoon. Marinated any thinly sliced meat with other flavourings like herbs, garlic or anything else you can think of, for at least two hours. Don’t worry, it won’t turn out tasting yogurty at all! Another favourite of mine is lamb with plum sauce marinade. I’ll share a homemade plum sauce recipe soon.
The other possibly odd thing about these noodles is that I used frozen noodles from my local asian grocery. Super easy, and the noodles are nice and dryish, so they don’t go all gluey and sticky when stir-fried with a sauce. I didn’t even know you could buy frozen udon… but there you go. My favourite store brightens my day yet again!