Happy Lunar (Chinese) New Year
Chinese New Year—often referred to as Lunar New Year--is a time to celebrate long-honored food traditions and delicious celebrations where the foods are symbols of luck and prosperity. Longevity Noodles celebrate long life and usually are one of the most delicious elements of the holiday meal.
My recipe for Longevity Noodles includes all the essentials that make for a well-balanced stir-fry, along with a few culinary tricks I learned along the way at China Rose. See all my secrets in the ChefSecret section of this blog.
The entire dish is hot and flavorful with great contrasting textures. Add shiitakes, green onions tops and plenty of crisp Napa cabbage to the wok. Be careful not to overcook the vegetables, just let them sizzle for a moment in the wok. You’ll notice the red pepper flakes and ginger bloom in the oil bringing a wonderful fresh flavor to the dish.
It is rumored the longer the noodle the great the longevity for you and your family.
Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Yield: 4-6 servings
12 ounces boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1/2- inch thick, bite-size pieces (thighs are perfect for high heat wok dishes)
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
2 tablespoons, plus 2 teaspoons Shaohsing rice cooking wine (or dry sherry), divided
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon, plus 1 teaspoon low sodium soy sauce, divided
1 teaspoon, divided (plus a pinch for the noodle water)
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
1 10-ounce package dried lo mein noodles
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
2 tablespoons peanut oil, divided
1/4 teaspoon dry crushed red pepper
3 cups thinly sliced Napa cabbage
2 cups fresh shiitake mushrooms, stems removed, caps thinly sliced
1/2 cup green onion tops, plus more for garnish (cut 1-inch long)
Chinese chili oil, for serving
ChefSecret: Toss the noodles in a wok separately, add in just a small amount of peanut oil keeping them light and springy (so they won’t stick together). Marinate the chicken in sherry, soy sauce, fresh ginger and just a bit of cornstarch. This keeps it moist when cooked in a hot sizzling hot wok with oil and red pepper flakes. This process of coating the meat in cornstarch is called velveting giving it that lovely smooth texture—the sign of a professional Asian chef.
Quip of the Day: Confucius Says: “Food can never be too clean and meat can never be sliced too thin.” （食不厭精，膾不厭細）
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To you and everyone dear to you, be strong, be positive, stay well, stay safe and be kind. Take a breath and count your blessings, and if you have a little extra to share with others, please consider donating to Feeding America and/or American Red Cross.
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