I skipped swimming tonight to run some errands I’ve been putting off the last week so all I wanted for dinner was something healthy and quick to make. I wanted a lot of half-cooked vegetables and imagined a lot of crunch to my meal. I immediately thought of cabbage and bubble and squeak, but I didn’t really feel like eating potatoes. I turned to the Filipino pancit after I remembered that I still have a package of cooked noodles from the Khmer Legacies swag a couple of weeks ago.
Canton noodles, one of the many Chinese influences Filipinos call their own, are long egg noodles that have been precooked and dried before packaging and thus only require a few minutes to cook. Time the prep just right and you’ll be slicing and dicing while the first batch of vegetables are cooking. This way, your time is spent efficiently and you avoid overcooking any of the ingredients. The worst is to eat soggy noodles. You can use angel hair noodles as a substitute here; just cook them al dente and toss with the vegetables before serving.
1 pack of pancit Canton noodles
2 cups of chicken broth
1 small head of cabbage, sliced into strips
1 cup of dried shiitake mushrooms, soaked in water then drained, roughly chopped
a handful of string beans, roughly chopped
1 small carrot, roughly chopped
2 red bell peppers, julienned
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
juice from 1 lime
1. Heat some peanut oil in a large skillet. Sauté garlic until brown and onions until soft. Add cabbage and toss until covered in oil. Let cook for about 5 minutes while occasionally mixing.
2. Add the carrots and cook for another 2 minutes. Then add the softened mushrooms, string beans and the bell peppers. Keep tossing all the ingredients together to cook evenly. Add chicken broth and cover the skillet for 3 minutes to steam the vegetables.
3. Meanwhile, soak the noodles in a bowl of water to soften them. Gently separate noodles by hand. Drain, uncover the skillet and add noodles with the vegetables. Drizzle some sesame oil for flavor and season with salt and a jigger or two of soy sauce to taste. Toss for another 3 minutes to make sure the noodles are evenly distributed. Remove to a plate and serve with lime juice for a little sting.