Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Random Tidbits: Part 6 - Oodles of Noodles (and Pasta)

(Last updated: Jan. 17th, 2010 @ 14:37)

Scroll to the bottom for links to the rest of the Random Tidbits series.


I can’t imagine a life without noodles or pasta. The main reason is because I don't like rice. Over the past month, we've had noodles and pasta quite a few times.

Homemade Pasta with Chicken and Fish in an Herb Cream Sauce – December 14th

Homemade Pasta with
Chicken and Fish with Herb Sauce 1
Mom altered the recipe a bit, which made the pasta less firm and springy like egg noodles. The pasta wasn't hung out to firm up, unlike the last time.

Homemade Pasta with
Chicken and Fish with Herb Sauce 2
And just like the previous time we made homemade pasta, we served the pasta with marinated chicken. It's a coincidence that we had marinated chicken in the fridge again.

Homemade Pasta with
Chicken and Fish with Herb Sauce 3
The cream sauce was made with some dried “fine herbs” from the spice rack. We threw in some basa fish in the sauce, too. The sauce was reminiscent of the coquille St-Jacques sauce.

I polished my plate off in record timing. I wish we had made more.

Phnom Penh Noodles – December 15th

Phnom Penh Noodles
My mom and dad had dry Phnom Penh noodles. The image above was taken during the early stages of his noodles with only rice noodles, oyster sauce, a bit soy sauce, fried garlic and fried garlic oil mixed in. To complete the bowl of noodles, protein (in the form of sliced beef, beef balls and a mix of ground pork and dried shrimp), cilantro, green onions, and a bit of soup was added. Along with his bowl of dry Phonm Penh noodles, my mom and dad had a bowl of soup on the side.

Phnom Penh Noodles
As for grandparents and myself, we had the wet Phnom Penh noodles. My bowl was very minimalistic, with only rice noodles, beef balls, sliced beef, fried garlic and fried garlic oil, a shot of fish sauce and cilantro and green onions. I took the picture just before I added the finishing touches.

Phnom Penh Noodles
The one thing my bowl of Phnom Penh noodles was missing the ground pork mixture. The ground pork for Phnom Penh noodles is made with minced garlic, dried shrimp, a bit of green onions, oyster sauce, light soy sauce and cornstarch. I don’t like the taste of dried shrimp so I just leave it out.

Phnom Penh Noodles 4
Mom also made some you tiao to go with the soup. Just thinking about dunking you tiao in the soup makes my mouth water. After lunch, we enjoyed strong coffee with you tiao - I think it's a Cambodian/Vietnamese thing, cause Jimmy and some of my Chinese friends grew up eating you tiao with soy milk. Maybe it's just a family thing. *shrug*

New Years Eve Lunch  December 30th, 2010

Like clockwork, Grandpa and Grandma came over for lunch on a day when mom wasn’t working. With them, they brought over 3 whole fresh lobsters for my parents to cook up. And just like clockwork, Grandpa started working the phones and invited everyone over.

Since we were low on groceries, Grandpa decided to order takeout from the New Hong Shing. Based on our many visits to the restaurant for various occasions, I knew that their noodles aren’t great. On the other hand, their soups are amazingly flavourful. Anyway, Grandpa gave the New Hong Shing a call...

New Years Eve 1
Grandma wanted egg noodles, so Grandpa ordered egg noodles with seafood. It was mediocre. There wasn’t much smokiness in the sauce and the egg noodles were soggy by the time we began to eat.

New Years Eve 2
(Sorry for the blurry picture.)
I suggested that he should order the rice noodles with soy sauce and beef. I’ve learned that ordering rice noodles with a wet sauce will only taste bad. The noodles absorb the sauce and become soggy. It was so-so.

New Years Eve 3
Despite my warning about soggy rice noodles, Grandpa ordered rice noodles with beef and Chinese vegetable. I thought he ordered my noodles, but when I opened up the box I noticed that there were black beans in the sauce. Whatever this was, it was not great. The noodles were soggy, which I was expecting, but the sauce didn’t have much flavour. I ended up adding a bit of soy sauce to help it go down.

New Years Eve 5
There was leftover Costco rotisserie chicken from the previous night. Surprisingly, the chicken was still juicy, tender and flavourful (we highly suspect that Costco brines their rotisserie chicken).

New Years Eve 6
My dad made a quick soup from the carcass of the rotisserie chicken, some bones from our freezer, and homemade mustard greens. He garnished the soup with green onions, fried garlic and fried garlic oil.

New Years Eve 4
The stars of the meal: 3 stir fried lobsters in a ginger and onion sauce. The lobsters were very sweet and tender. If there were more sauce, it would’ve been more enjoyable.

After lunch, I had a really bad stomach ache. I’m assuming it was because of all the grease. If I had tea with everyone else, I think it would’ve helped.

New Year Noodles – January 1st, 2011

Mom and Dad made some stir fried rice noodles with beef for dinner. We call it cha kway teow in Teochew. They used the wider pho noodles (banh mi) as opposed to the wider rice noodles.

New Year Noodles 1
The noodles were soaked and then stir-fried with a bit of vegetable oil, oyster sauce and dark soy sauce.

New Year Noodles 2
The beef was marinated in oyster sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil, cooking wine and a bit of baking soda (used as a tenderizer).  As for the Chinese vegetables, they were parboiled and stir-fried with minced garlic. Oyster sauce, sesame oil, cooking wine, and a slurry of cornstarch and water were then added to the Chinese vegetables to make the sauce.

New Year Noodles 3
The giant plate of noodles was devoured in less than 20 minutes. I thought it was crazy how quickly we finished dinner. The noodles were pretty good. I thought this was one of the better batches of stir fried noodles my parents made.

We don’t make pasta nearly enough. I’m not sure why. The opposite is true about making noodle soup. A handful of our family, including Lucy and Jimmy, are sick of pho and Phnom Penh noodles. On the other hand, I can enjoy noodle soup every week. Actually, I’m craving pho right now. Anyway, I still think that ordering noodles for takeout is a bad idea. Even if you order a noodle dish without a sauce, I think the whole dish changes, for the worse, when it sits in the container. I don’t think I can ever get sick of noodles, noodles soup, or pasta.


1 comment:

  1. Hi Christine - Sick of Pho and PPN? They must've been adopted, right? he-he-he......


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