Against Monotony

18/10/2014 § Leave a comment


My bed missed me so I kept on sticking with it for longer periods. I couldn’t blame myself. Even though I say I like doing night shifts at work and I am perfectly fine doing several of it, my body does not seem to agree with me recently. I do not know why either. I still wake up after six hours but I just try to sleep more. It makes me feel lazy though.

For tonight’s dinner…..tada!

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I cooked fried udon noodles, or more like stir-fried. I had a friend working in a Japanese restaurant and I was made to try a yaki-udon dish one time that I visited. It was so delicious so I had intended to try my hands on this dish since then. I am not exactly someone who can distinguish ingredients from eating a dish, so I had to look up a recipe online and used it as a guide to create my own.

The one served in the restaurant has cabbage, carrots and mushrooms in it and topped with bonito flakes. I do not particularly like mushrooms by the way so I did not even consider adding it on my own recipe. The photo below was what it looked like.

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My own cooking looks sloppy, I know, but it tasted good anyway. So here is for noodle cooking one-oh-one. This is is for one serving by the way.

Ingredients:
Udon noodles, 1 pack (I use the fresh kind)
Teriyaki sauce, 3 tablespoons (add more according to your taste)
Cabbage, 1/8 of the cabbage head, julienned
Carrots, 1 small, peeled and thinly sliced
Onion, julienned (I only use one to two slices, and I prefer white onions)
Garlic, 1-2 cloves, minced
Chicken or pork meat, thinly sliced
Bonito flakes
Salt
Pepper (I use the fine kind)
Oil

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Note: Julienne is a culinary term referring to a knife cut of about 2 inches long, and 1/8 × 1/8 inch in width. In layman’s term, cut it into strips, but not finely.

This dish recipe is a stir-fried noodle. So there will be a need for a constant stirring of the ingredients, basically to keep anything from sticking to the pan, and to distribute the flavor to every other ingredient.

1. First, heat the pan and add oil, just enough to thinly cover the pan. Add garlic. Wait a while before adding onions. I try to avoid toasting the garlic.
2. Before the onion becomes transluscent, add meat. Stir occassionally until slightly cooked. Add salt and pepper according to taste, just a pinch of both will do. Add 2 tablespoons of teriyaki sauce and continue to stir.
3. Add carrots, stir and wait a while before adding cabbage. Do not let the teriyaki sauce dry up before adding the vegetables. Add the rest of the teriyaki sauce and continue to stir.
Carrots take longer time to cook as compared to cabbage, and that is the reason why I decided to put the carrots first. However, because of the cut of the carrots used in this recipe, it is easier for it to be cooked.
4. Add the udon noodles. Follow the packaging instructions in cooking the noodles. Some might need to be boiled first before adding anything to it. Some can just be added to the pan without doing anything. I try to wash the noodles first if it does not need any boiling though, and it was not even in the packaging instructions.
5. Continue to stir the noodles together with the vegetables and meat until the color of the noodles becomes different. Add salt and pepper if desired. I usually add about two tablespoons of water jut to keep the dish from drying up. I try not to overcook the noodles until it becomes soggy and starts sticking to the pan. Remove from heat and put in a nice plate. Topped with bonito flakes and enjoy!

My recipe was very simple and easy to follow. It only takes a short time to cook the dish. Furthermore, the ingredients I used to make this are actually cheap. I am not a big fan of vegetables so I try to use the typical ones that I am sure I can eat. You can also add other vegetables that you like, such as mushrooms and green peppers.

18th October 2014
All photos are taken using Samsung Galaxy Note II

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