Friday, December 12, 2014

Singapore Style Rice Noodles

I love noodles and since I've started eating Gluten Free, I've been using Asian rice noodles a lot more. One of the dishes I've resurrected from my childhood and was a favorite of my kids as well is Singapore Style Rice Noodles, which is basically rice vermicelli sautéed with vegetables and meat in a dry curry sauce.  Usually it includes Chinese barbecue pork (Char Siu) and shrimp, which is something I can't eat so I tend to make it with chicken and barbecue pork when I have it.  You can add any number of vegetables too. It's a quick and light meal that brightens up your tastebuds. I always use a mild curry - usually Madras, but I am quite partial to the McCormick and Schmick's brand too.  Some people like to use the hot version, but since I used to serve this to my kids, I've always used the mild flavor. The good news is that curry powder gets it's lovely yellow color from Turmeric, which is a potent anti-inflammatory so we should all start eating more of it.  So, here's another good chance to add it to your diet in a delicious way!

Singapore Style Rice Noodles

1 pound chicken breasts, sliced into small pieces for stir frying (or use 1/2 pound Char Siu and 1/2 pound peeled raw shrimp marinated in Rice Wine).
1/4 cup Chinese Rice Wine
1 Tablespoon Tamari
5 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil
1 medium onion, peeled, trimmed and cut in half and into thin pieces
1/2 large red pepper, stem and seeds removed and sliced into think pieces
1 small carrot, stem removed, peeled and cut into thin julienne pieces
4 - 5 green onions, root removed and sliced into 1 1/2' long pieces and then sliced in half
1 cup of green beans, stem removed, cut into 1 1/2" pieces
1 handful of washed bean sprouts
8 ounces Rice Vermicelli (also called Mee Krob or Angel Hair Rice Noodles)
2 Tablespoons Curry Powder
1/2 teaspoon sugar
2 Tablespoons Tamari
1 teaspoon Sesame Oil
1/2 + 1/4 cup of chicken broth

Put chicken slices in a bowl and cover with the Rice Wine and Tamari. Mix to coat and marinate.  Bring water to a boil in a small saucepan. Add green beans and cook for 5 minutes.   Remove the beans and put the Rice Vermicelli into the hot water with the heat off. Let sit for 5 minutes and drain in a colander.  

Add 2 Tablespoons to the wok or large frying pan.  Heat and add chicken breast and cook until the meat is opaque. Remove and add 2 additional Tablespoons of oil to the pan. Add in onion, red pepper and carrots.  Stir fry until the onion is translucent and the carrot is softened. Add another Tablespoon of oil and put in the green beans and the rice noodles and toss until the noodles are hot.  Put in the Curry Powder, sugar, Tamari and 1/2 cup of the Chicken Broth and stir to coat. Cook until the liquid evaporates.  Add the chicken back in with the Bean Sprouts, the Green Onions and the 1/4 cup of Chicken Broth and cook until the bean sprouts and green onions just begin to wilt and the remainder of the broth is mostly absorbed. Sprinkle with the Sesame Oil, toss and serve hot.

Five Element Analysis

This is a very colorful dish, so already you know that the Five Elements of food will be well represented. The chicken, chicken broth, green beans and bean sprouts bring in the Wood Element, the rice noodles contribute the Metal Element along with the green onions and the Curry Powder. The Chinese Rice Wine and the red pepper bring in the Fire Element and the Tamari, Sesame Oil and the shrimp or BBQ Pork (if using) add the Water Element.  The Earth Element is represented by the carrots so that is the only element that is a bit deficient.    So be sure to serve this dish with a sweet fruit dessert to create a Five Element balance.

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