I’m back to a cool and breezy London, which is a bit of a relief after the high temperatures and high humidity of the tropics. I’ve only just started going through the ridiculous number of photos I took (as usual) and so I’ll first post this recipe which is still entirely suitable for this current weather. How about a warming bowl of noodle soup?
I first had this noodle soup with pork and preserved vegetable at a restaurant in Vancouver, one that my family was introduced to almost immediately after we landed there for the first time. The place is called On Lok and it’s very much a hole-in-a-wall Chinese restaurant located on East Hastings (this post describes it well). I have no idea whether the food still matches up to my nostalgic recollections but back then, I had a soft spot for this noodle soup while my brother adored their minced beef on rice.
A post appeared on Sunflower’s Food Galore with a rough recipe for this dish a few months ago and I was thrilled to see it. I made it at home and it really was pretty close to what I remember – slivers of pork and salty preserved vegetable and noodles all in a soothing stock. The recipe below is adapted from hers and contains exact measurements, if that’s what you like. Of course, do adapt amounts to your preference; I like a lot of preserved vegetable and the recipe below reflects this!
Pork and Preserved Vegetable Noodle Soup
adapted from a recipe at Sunflower’s Food Galore.
A 200g pork chop, trimmed and cut into short, thin strips
2 tsp light soy sauce
a few shakes of white papper
a dash of sesame oil
1 tsp cornflour/cornstarch
1 tbsp sunflower oil
a thumb sized chunk of ginger, cut into large matchsticks
a splash of Shaoxing rice wine
a medium sized chunk of preserved vegetable with chili (zha cai), cut into matchsticks
1-2 tsp of dark soy sauce
a large pinch of sugar
3 bundles of dried rice vermicelli sticks, as you get at the supermarket or an equivalent amount for two people
hot stock (mine was pork based – I used the bones off the pork chop)
Mix the pork strips with the light soy, white pepper, sesame oil and cornflour and leave to marinate for about 20 minutes.
Rinse and squeeze dry the preserved vegetable sticks – they’re very salty!
Heat a frying pan over medium heat and add the sunflower oil. When it’s hot, add the garlic, stir for about 10-15 seconds and then add the pork and fry until cooked. Toss in the ginger and a good splash of Shaoxing wine and let it all bubble away. Add the preserved vegetable and cook until it’s heated through. Finally, add the dark soy and the sugar and stir a final time.
Prepare the rice vermicelli as per the instructions and divide them between two large bowls suitable for noodle soup. Top with the prepared pork and preserved vegetable mixture and then ladle the broth over top. Serve.