Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Asian Prawn (Shrimp) Noodles

I have always hesitated to cook raw prawns/shrimp. I’m not sure why, but the idea worried me. If you feel the same way, by all means use pre-cooked prawns or shrimp in this recipe, just add them at the very last minute so they don’t go rubbery. However, now that I have cooked them from raw, I must say it is incredibly easy and they do taste really lovely. Also, you can be sure to de-vein them properly as well. (De-veining means removing the black line that runs down the back of the prawn/shrimp before you cook it. The vein is actually the digestive tract of the fish, and not something you want to be eating! Sometimes when you buy them already cooked, the digestive tract has not really been properly removed.)

There is a lot of debate over the name of this shellfish - are they shrimp or prawns? Some people say it depends on size what they are called, but I have had things called both shrimp and prawns of all sizes. As far as I can tell, they are mostly called prawns in England and shrimp in North America. I just use both names to avoid confusion. However, one thing there is no confusion about in our house is how delicious my recipe for Asian prawn/shrimp noodles is!

2 tablespoons + 1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon mild olive oil
1 teaspoon “Very Lazy” Ginger or about 1/4 inch of ginger root, grated
1/4 cup mild sweet chili sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce
About 28 or so raw prawns/shrimp, deveined
1 large onion, finely sliced
3 cups peeled and finely chopped or sliced vegetables
(I used carrots, mange tout (snow peas), baby corn, red and yellow pepper)
4 medium “nests” of dried egg noodles

Heat the oil in a large frying pan or wok until it is very hot. Add the onion and stir fry until it begins to soften. Add the ginger and stir fry for a few seconds. Add the remaining vegetables and fry, stirring often.

Meanwhile, cook the noodles in boiling water according to package directions. When cooked, drain and rinse in cold water. Toss with 1 tablespoon sesame oil. Set aside.

When the vegetables are nearly cooked (you want them to be tender-crisp), heat the 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a separate medium frying pan. Add the prawns/shrimp and stir fry for a few minutes, turning occasionally, just until they turn pink.

Add the noodles to the stir fried vegetables, along with the sweet chilli sauce and soy sauce, stirring to coat. Divide the mixture between four plates, topping each plate with about 6 or 7 prawns/shrimp.

Serve immediately.

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