The noo­dle salad

Spring veg­etable bun cha with tofu and soy-pick­led cab­bage

The Guardian - Feast - - Meera Sodha -

Prep 20 min

Cook 35 min

Serves 4

For the soy-pick­led cab­bage

150g red cab­bage, finely shred­ded

1 tbsp rape­seed oil 2 gar­lic cloves, peeled and cut into pa­per-thin slices

1 bird’s eye chilli, cut into pa­perthin slices

100ml soy sauce 2 tbsp lime juice 2½ tbsp caster su­gar 1 tbsp whitewine vine­gar

For the tofu 400g ex­tra-firm tofu Rape­seed oil

Salt and pep­per

For the spring veg and noo­dles

1 onion, peeled and finely sliced

1 red bird’s eye chilli, finely chopped 1.5cm piece gin­ger, peeled and grated

2 gar­lic cloves, peeled and minced 14 spring onions, thinly sliced

150g frozen pe­tit pois, de­frosted 150g frozen broad beans, de­frosted

½ tsp salt 200g wa­ter­cress leaves, chopped 250g rice ver­mi­celli noo­dles

To gar­nish

1 hand­ful salted peanuts, smashed

1 hand­ful co­rian­der leaves, chopped

1 hand­ful mint leaves A good bun cha is all about the de­li­cious nuoc cham dress­ing, but the herb and peanut gar­nish also adds a lot to the over­all magic, so don’t leave that out if you can help it.

Put the cab­bage in a medium-size heat­proof bowl. Heat a ta­ble­spoon of oil in a small saucepan over a low heat and, when hot, add the gar­lic and chilli. Stir-fry for a minute, then add the soy sauce, lime juice, su­gar, vine­gar and eight ta­ble­spoons of wa­ter. Bring to a boil, take off the heat and pour over the cab­bage.

Lightly press the tofu block be­tween your palms to ex­tract as much wa­ter as pos­si­ble, then cut into 12 or so 5mm-thick slices. Heat two ta­ble­spoons of oil in a non­stick fry­ing pan on a medium heat, then lay in the tofu slices (in batches, if need be), sea­son the tops with a big pinch of salt and pep­per, and leave to fry undis­turbed for four to six min­utes, un­til a crust starts to form. Turn the tofu, sea­son again and fry un­til crisp and golden on the flip side, too (add more oil, if need be). Trans­fer to a plate lined with kitchen towel.

In the same fry­ing pan, heat a few ta­ble­spoons of oil on a high heat, then fry the onion hard for five min­utes, so the edges brown but it’s still juicy. Add the chilli, gin­ger, gar­lic and spring onions (re­serve a hand­ful to dec­o­rate), and fry for six min­utes, un­til soft. Add the pe­tits pois, beans and salt, stir-fry for two min­utes, then add the wa­ter­cress. Briefly mix to wilt, then turn off the heat.

Boil the ket­tle, soak the noo­dles ac­cord­ing to the packet in­struc­tions, then drain, re­fresh and drain again.

Di­vide the noo­dles, tofu and veg be­tween four bowls. Put a lit­tle cab­bage in each bowl, then pour its pick­ling liq­uid over the top. Gar­nish with smashed peanuts, herbs and the re­served spring onions, and serve.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.