Sunday Supper & More

Stir-fried noodles with spicy beef and Napa cabbage

May 18, 2011

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Serves 4 with leftovers

Salt, to taste
2 packages (9 ounces each) fresh udon (or “Japanese-style’’) noodles
1 teaspoon dark sesame oil
1 1/4 pounds flank steak or sirloin tips, cut into thin strips
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon cornstarch
3 tablespoons canola oil
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 small head Napa cabbage, cut into 1-inch pieces (to make 4 cups)
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoon chili-garlic sauce (such as sriracha), or to taste
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
2 scallions, thinly sliced

1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the noodles and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes or until the are just tender. Drain well. Transfer to a bowl and toss with the sesame oil.

2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, toss the beef with 1 teaspoon of the soy sauce, a generous sprinkling of salt, and the cornstarch.

3. In a large wok or skillet over medium-high heat, heat 1 1/2 tablespoons canola oil until hot. Add the beef and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes or until it loses its raw color. Transfer to a large plate.

4. Add the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons canola oil to the pan. Cook the garlic, stirring constantly, for 20 seconds or until it starts to sizzle steadily. Add the cabbage, sprinkle lightly with salt, and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes or until it wilts but is still a little crunchy.

5. In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining soy sauce with the vinegar, chili sauce, and sugar. Return the beef to the pan, pour in the sauce, and cook, stirring, for 1 to 2 minutes or until the flavors blend and the beef is cooked through.

6. Add the noodles and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes or until heated through. Set aside 3 cups beef/noodle mixture for the soup. Sprinkle with the sesame seeds and scallions.

Tony Rosenfeld