A satisfying meal that doesn’t take long to prepare
Noodles with sprouts, lettuce and burnt ginger with five treasure vegetables in chilli-garlic sauce
When you have a relaxed day lounging around and are looking forward to a little bit of being lazier, there’s nothing that soothes the soul like Chinese food. Picture this: some nice entertaining shows on the telly, lots of laughs with the family around and pretty decent weather. Now you know what I mean? It was exactly one of those days and I really hadn’t stepped into the kitchen because the first half of the day kept us quite busy. There was some award show scheduled on TV that night and we didn’t want to dig into outside food while watching TV, so it had to be homemade and it had to be Chinese.
With these basic conditions set, I was wondering if I should do a soup with a stir fry? But then I didn’t think it would be all that filling so decided on something that’s a little more substantial. For the five treasure vegetables in chilli-garlic sauce, I used a recipe from Tarla Dalal’s book and for the noodles with burnt ginger, sprouts and iceberg lettuce, I relied on memories from a recent dinner at Mainland China where we had this fried rice with burnt ginger and lettuce. I just loved the way the crunchy lettuce contrasted against the sweetish, pungent flavours of the ginger and I added the sprouts to this just to make it a little more nutritious.
Five treasure vegetables in chilli-garlic sauce
1 small broccoli, cut into florets and blanched
2 kinds of bell peppers, de-seeded and chopped
1 cup of button mushrooms, sliced
1 onion, chopped into slightly big pieces
Some bok choy, roughly chopped
For the chilli-garlic sauce:
5-6 cloves of garlic
3 red chillies, soaked in water for 30 minutes
2 tomatoes, chopped
1 tsp of white vinegar
½ tsp of soya sauce

Grind all these ingredients into a smooth paste

Oil (I used sesame oil for this one)
Salt to taste
Heat some oil in a pan and add the onions, sauté till they begin to change colour and then add the mushrooms and broccoli and mix well. Now add the bok choy to this and cook for half a minute. Add the chilli-garlic paste to this along with ½ cup of water and cook until the sauce begins to bubble. Adjust the seasoning. Add the bell peppers just before you turn off the flame. Serve hot. 
The five treasure vegetables
Noodles with burnt ginger, iceberg lettuce and sprouts
250 gms of noodles, cooked according to instructions on the packet
1 cup of mixed sprouts, blanched
1 ½ tsp of ginger, peeled and minced
2 cups of iceberg lettuce, shredded
1 tsp of soya sauce
Salt to taste
Heat some oil in a wok and add the ginger to this, leave the stove on a medium flame while you continuously stir-fry the ginger till it becomes a deep, dark brown. Now add the mixed sprouts, soya sauce, noodles and iceberg lettuce in quick succession. Stir-fry until all the ingredients have combined well, adjust the seasoning and turn off the heat. Serve hot. 
  • You can add any vegetables that you like to the dish, even protein in the form of shredded chicken or some shrimp is a good idea.
  • If you can’t find iceberg lettuce, then use cabbage.
  • Don’t keep the flame on for too long after adding the lettuce because then it will loose all the crunchiness.
This is going off to the Healthy diet – vegetarian side dishes event that’s hosted by Vardhini and started by Priya

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