Chef Time!

Chef Time!

Monday, January 2, 2012

Ants Climbing A Tree

With all these spending plus the crazy gas price, I have to cut back on other things. I made a frugal dish called Ants Climbing A Tree (I couldn’t pronounce nor spell the Chinese name). It’s a traditional Chinese noodle dish. Usually it was pretty spicy, but I made it mild.  It has a little bit of ground meat and the clear cellophane noodles and some seasonings. That’s pretty much it.  It’s easy to make.  The clear noodles absorb whatever seasoning that I added, and it was delicious. Not bad at all for a cheap meal when you’re on a budget.

1/3 to ½ pound Ground meat, (I used ground beef. The traditional dish used ground pork. You can even use ground chicken or turkey).
2 small packs Cellophane noodles
2 cloves Garlic,
2 stalks Scallion,
1Small onion,
1 tsp. Chicken powder,
1 tbsp. Chinese cooking wine,
4 tbsp. Water,
1 tsp. Cornstarch,
1 tbsp. Soy sauce,
1 tbsp. Oyster sauce,
a dash White pepper,
½ tsp. Chili sauce, (you can add more)

Boil about 5 or 6 cups of water in a saucepan. When water boils, add cellophane noodles. Let it cook for 7-10 minutes until it is soft. Use a colander to hold the noodles and discard the water. Put it aside.
Cut scallion into dices. Put it aside.
Finely chopped garlic. Put it aside.
Cut onion into strips, put it aside.
Prepare the sauce: In a bowl, add chicken powder, water, soy sauce, oyster sauce, white pepper and cornstarch. Mix it well. Put it aside.
Use a non-stick frying pan. Spray non-stick cooking oil to the pan. Use high heat. Add garlic, onion and meat to the pan. Add Chinese cooking wine. Stir fry the meat until it is cooked.
Add cellophane to the meat. Let it cook for couple of minutes to make the noodles dry up a little bit.
Add the sauce. Mix everything well. Turn down the heat to low. Let it simmer for 4 or 5 minutes or until the sauce is fully absorbed by the noodles. Stir the sauce well into the noodles. Add the chili sauce to the noodles. Taste it. Add a dash of salt or more chili sauce if needed.
Add chopped scallion. Mix it well. Turn off the heat. Serve hot.

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