The weekend is over and some of us might still be recovering from one or the other party night. What’s better than a healthy, detoxing meal? :)
Some of you might have noticed that I particularly enjoy the Asian cuisine. Two of its most convincing benefits for me are that Asian cooking typically is quick and the list of ingredients is made up of a handful of items only. Looking for a green veggie? Don’t have broccoli in your fridge? Substitute it with spinach or green bell pepper, that’s how easy it is. There is hardly any better way to process food left overs. Just make sure that you have some kind of noodles (egg or rice noodles) or white rice and soy sauce on stock and you are ready to go. If you happen to be a meat lover, simply add a handful of meat or seafood to the recipe, this will also always work!
Here is one of my latest creations with rice noodles:
Ingredients (serves 2-3):
1 pack thin rice noodles (rice vermicelli)
4 spring onions
4 cloves garlic
250 g fresh spinach (equals 1 pack spinach leaves)
2 tablespoons sesame oil, dark soy sauce, regular soy sauce
1) Boil the rice vermicelli according to instruction (usually it says to put the noodles in hot water for 4-5 min). Then comes the important part: Immediately rinse the noodles under ice cold water. This prevents them from sticking together. You will be able to cut them in 1 inch long pieces or leave them in their full length, as you wish.
2) Then clean and prepare all the veggies: Slice the spring onions, garlic and carrots. Wash the spinach leaves and peel and slice the ginger root.
3) In hot sesame oil, stir fry the spring onion, garlic and ginger. Then add the carrot slices and keep on stirring for 1-2 minutes.
4) When this is done, add the cold rice vermicelli and season with soy sauce. I prefer a mix of dark and regular soy sauce as I find the dark soy sauce tastier and thicker. If you like it spicy, add a tablespoon or two of sambal oelek or chili sauce.
5) Now comes the final step: Stir in the spinach leaves and keep on stirring for about 1-2 min (the spinach leaves should still be a little crisp, not too squishy).
Tip for handling any kind of rice noodles:
It took me a while to find out that rice noodles should immediately be rinsed under ice cold water when they are done. If you miss to do so, they will always turn out sticky. The same thing happens if you cook them for too long. They form a mass of jelly. I have a funny anecdote as well. My first attempt of making Vietnamese Nems ended in a disaster: I put the whole pack of rice leaves into a bowl with water and only managed to remove the first layer because all other leaves had glued together!