Friday, 28 June 2013

Spicy Ginger-Lime Udon Stir-Fry

A few weeks ago, I made a lovely udon noodle stir-fry. It was very tasty, but it needed a side of protein to make a full meal. I was in the mood for a stir-fry, but I really wanted a one-bowl meal. I was also craving the intricate blend of spicy, hot, sweet and salty flavors that good Thai food never fails to deliver. In such circumstances, what's a girl to do but dig out a whole pile of ingredients from her pantry and throw it all together in a wok?

That's what I did!

There was a bag of shrimps in the freezer, just waiting to be turned into something tasty, so that's what I used, but chicken or pork, cut into thin strips would work very well here, as would some pre-fried extra-firm tofu, for those who swing that way. If you are going to use shrimps, you can definitely use pre-cooked shrimps. They won't need to be in the wok as long; just make sure they are nice and heated through. Mushrooms and bell peppers are some of my favorite veggies to use in stir-fries because they cook quickly. They are also wonderful immune boosters, which I really needed as I have been nursing a cold for the past few days (in June!! what the fuck?!), but if you have snow peas, baby corn or broccoli florets, they are all wonderful with stir-fried noodles.

I basically used the same technique I had used with the previous udon recipe, but with the sort of flavors I usually see in McDermott's "Real Vegetarian Thai". For the sauce, you have to taste and adjust: not everyone handles Sri Racha as stoically as my boyfriend (as I realized when I served my brother some General Tao tofu and he spent most of the meal blowing his nose... he loved it, but it was obviously too spicy for normal people), and since I am used to cooking for him, I can go a little overboard with it without even noticing. Just be careful!

1 1/2 lime, juiced
2 tablespoons fresh ginger, finely chopped
1 to 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 1/2 tablespoon sesame oil
1 1/2 tablespoon soy sauce
1 1/2 tablespoon fish sauce (or more soy sauce and a pinch of sea salt)
2 teaspoons Sri Racha sauce
1 teaspoon cane sugar

1 (8 ounce) package udon noodles
2 tablespoons peanut oil
1 small yellow onion, finely minced
1 pound medium shrimps, peeled, deveined
1 small red bell pepper, julienned
1 container cremini mushrooms, thinly sliced

Sesame seeds, for garnish
Fresh cilantro, chopped, for garnish
Lime wedges, for garnish

Mix all the sauce ingredients together in a small bowl. Taste and adjust.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the noodles according to the package instruction. While the noodles are boiling, preheat the peanut oil in a large wok, over medium heat. Stir-fry the onion until it just begins to soften. Add the shrimps, and stir-fry until cooked and pink.

Add the bell pepper and mushroom and cook until the mushrooms have released their moisture and are shiny.

Remove the vegetables and shrimps from the wok and set aside. Remove the wok from the heat, add the sauce and let it get warmed up, stirring it for a couple of minutes until it thickens.

Add the noodles, vegetables and shrimps pan to the wok, put back on the heat and cook for a few more minutes, mixing it all up, until the flavors have blended well.

Serve sprinkled with sesame seeds and cilantro leaves, with lime wedges.

Oh boy, did this ever kick ass! Hot, tangy, slurpy noodles with crunchy veggies and chewy shrimps. On a dull week night, what else could you want? I love this sauce so much that I just can't wait to try it with different veggies and protein. I bet it will be insane with chicken, red onion and baby corn, or with some tofu, sugar snap peas, grated carrots and scallions... Omnomnom!

This recipe would be perfect for those who want healthy lunches that can be eaten on the go. It tastes wonderfully fresh and light, so it's ideal even with hot summer weather, and can be played around easily depending on what you have in the fridge! Enjoy experimenting with it!

1 comment:

  1. That looks inviting! I like eating spicy food because it always wake my brain when I'm lazy to go on my work. I will really try this for my morning food tomorrow. Thanks for sharing this.

    Easy Stir Fry