Tuesday, March 18, 2014
Noodle Soup and Iggy Pop
I keep forgetting to tell you about the way we made noodle soup with our monk friends. Today seems like a really good day for noodle soup, doesn't it? Are the rest of you dealing with this ice? Ugh, I am so sick of ice raining from the sky!!!
Jamphel sends me emails every day and the day Wesley and Gerry were coming home, he sent me a note saying I should make noodle soup for them. I replied that they would eat before they got home and they would be late. I sent him some photos of them at the tournament and some links to pictures they shot. Here was his reply to me the next day:
Now I have a monk making sure I am fixing good meals for my family, haha! Every time I read this email, I smile:)
I have no recipe for the noodle soup we made, although if you google thukpa, you can get several versions that are very good. But here is what we did:
The first thing was to prep the noodles so they could rest while we cooked the veggies. Clay peeps, this will be easy for you:
put some plain flour in a large bowl, the amount is going to depend on how many noodles you want, I would say from now on, for my family of three I will probably use 2 cups of flour. For the five of us, we used almost a whole bag of flour! Add cold water slowly until flour and water form a nice firm dough, sort of like a ball of clay you are going to wedge. Then wedge (knead!) that dough. It wants to be elastic and smooth, not sticky. If you live in the south and make dumplings that you cut, this is the same dough.
Roll the dough into a long rectangle with a width of about 4", then slice across the dough into pieces that will be easy to roll into a coil, they should look about the size of a spring roll. Let this dough sit in a bowl or on a tray covered while you cook the veggies
Chop up some bok choy, green pepper, onion, scallions, and celery and stir fry in a wok with some oil.(the second time we made it I had red sweet pepper and mushrooms, you can really toss in whatever you have on hand)
We added a LOT of red pepper flakes and it makes it really good but choose your heat, I think we added at least a tsp or more, probably more. Also season with lots of black pepper and salt to taste. The monks use so much pepper, but it really makes a difference in flavoring food if you can take the heat.
When the veggies are soft and cooked through, add water to the wok/veggies leaving just enough room to add your noodles, or you can do like we did the first time and move everything to a large pot.
( I would have thought stock would be better, but water is really just fine)
Bring temp up to a good boil and then you can add the noodles.
Now for the noodles: take one of the spring roll size slices and roll it between your palms like the native american women roll their coils for making pottery :) then with your fingers flatten the coils from top to bottom. It should be about 12" long at this point and sort of thin, but not so thin that you can't handle it. It can be wrapped around your wrist for easy handling, tricky, but it gets easier the more you do it. After the noodle is flat, pinch off one inch pieces from top to bottom and throw in the boiling water. Watch the video below if I have totally confused you! Notice that Jamphel is on to coil number two before Wesley even figures out how to hold her long noodle haha!
Boil the noodles until done and right before serving add one egg to the soup, stir it in quickly. This makes the soup creamy and silky and yummy! You can leave the egg out if you want to though.
Again I have no recipe to go by, but I think the noodles cook about 10-15 minutes. They are sturdy noodles and don't fall apart or get mushy, reheat easily, and in fact taste better the next day. You could add some chicken or pork or beef. Add some soy sauce, some siracha. It's a really great base for all sorts of experimenting and meal stretching. Hope you try it, email if you get stuck!
Here's what our first try looked like: (I forgot to turn on the audio on the camera, sorry )
In other news, our monk friends have been to New York and New Jersey since they left us. They performed the opening invocation at Tibet House, Iggy Pop and Patti Smith performed for a benefit concert there. Here is Jampel with Iggy Pop. Never in my lifetime would I have guessed I would be friends with a monk from Tibet that would send me a photo of himself with Iggy Pop in NY. Seriously, pinch me to see if I'm dreaming!!!