Thursday 3 February 2011

Hot & Sour Chicken Noodles

Happy new year. 2011 is the Chinese year of the Rabbit and what better way to celebrate than to eat a big steaming bowl of noodles. Noodles are traditionally eaten at this time of year as they symbolise longevity so as long as you don't go snipping them, slurp away for a long life.

This particular recipe is a bastardisation of the ever excellent Sunflower's Chongquing suan la fen. I omitted ingredients that I couldn't find and instead replaced them, as well as skipping steps because I was too hungry to spend the extra time. Still, it was excellent; sourness coming from the pickled mustard greens (zha cai), spiciness from the chilli bean paste, all tempered with a little sugar and then ramped up with some fresh chillis.

Sweet potato starch noodles were slippery and slithery, and an odd burst of greenery gave welcome crunch.

Hot & Sour Chicken Noodles

Serves 2

150gr sweet potato noodles (rice vermicelli also works)
2 chicken thighs
3 cloves of garlic
1 inch of ginger
1 x 30gr sachet of ready sliced zha cai (you can buy this in Chinatown - or any kind of pickled vegetable will do)
2 tbsp chilli bean paste
1 tbsp light soy
1 tbsp Chinese black vinegar
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp sugar
2 long red chillis
300ml chicken stock
2 spring onions
Pak choi (or any greens really; I used pak choi and sugarsnap peas)

Soak the sweet potato noodles in boiling water until cooked. Meanwhile, deskin the thighs and remove the bone and pulse with the ginger until coarsely minced.

Rinse the pickled vegetable and set to one side. Heat some oil in a wok and add the garlic, minced. Add the chicken and the chillis chopped up and stir fry until there is no pink left in the meat. Add the chilli bean paste and stir fry until everything is coated. Throw in the pickled vegetables, soy sauce, vinegar and sugar and the chicken stock and simmer for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, steam your vegetables until they're cooked.

To assemble, place the noodles in the bowl and top with the vegetables. Add the chicken mixture on top with half the broth per bowl. Finally, drizzle the sesame oil on top and garnish with spring onion.


Su-Lin said...

Mmm... I can almost taste it now.

Happy Chinese New Year, Lizzie!

Miss Cay said...

Cor, this looks amazing. Particularly like the sweet potato noodles - I love the 'squeak' those make when you slurp them up through your teeth.

Unknown said...

Oh my god those noodles look so GOOD I want them now! Happy Chinese New Year!

sunflower said...

Looks good. I love this H&S noodles.

Happy New Year to you!

Anonymous said...

Full to the brim from last nights epic feast, but still want a bowl this morning. They look gorgeous

Unknown said...

looks sooooo good!... I want this for breakfast... is that wrong? HNY xx

Daily T said...

Nice worktop. Looks q expensive.

Greedy Diva said...

YUM! Happy Chinese New Year! I'm going to celebrate a day late.

The Grubworm said...

Those are very tasty looking noodles. I guess you could make them super-topical and use rabbit instead of chicken. Is it bad to eat the anmial associated with the year?

S said...

this is one of my favourite type of meals in the world- noodles- spicy- so, so good. love it, Lizzie! am salivating at the thought of preparing this. wishing you a happy chinese new year. hope you got lots of little red bags with money inside! x shayma

Hengki Budi Prasetyo said...

Happy New Year of Chinese. I like this quisine. Of course, delicious. Vermicelli in this picture use rice vermicelli ... in my country, it is called as bih-un. Well, did you get lot of money with red envelope?

Hollow Legs said...

Thanks all!

Hengki - no, they were sweet potato starch noodles, not rice vermicelli. And no, long gone are the days of me getting red packets!

Chris (Deptford) said...

Thanks for this recipe, made it on Saturday night. Absolutely fantastic. I'm craving it again already so will probably make it again this coming weekend. Yum!
p.s. I love your blog!

Unknown said...

I just made this and it was excellent. You should know your archives are appreciated (and mined). Don't worry I have Chinatown Kitchen preordered :)

Hollow Legs said...

Lizzie - that is GREAT to hear, on both fronts. Thank you! (also, great name ;) )