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- 4 ounces pea shoots
- 4 ounces dried Chinese wheat noodles -- thin mixes best with the shoots, but thick work OK too
- a peeled garlic clove
- 1 Tbsp sugar
- 2 Tbsp Chinese black vinegar (Chinkiang vinegar)
- 1 Tbsp soy sauce
- 2 heaped tablespoons la jiao, with plenty of oil
- 1 Tbsp grated ginger
- a fistful of coriander, chopped (optional)
- Pick through the pea shoots and remove any brown or black pieces. Wash and drain (don't need to spin dry). Bring a pot of salted water large enough to hold the noodles and shoots to the boil.
- Be sure to note how long the noodles need to boil for—drop them into the boiling water and keep track of their doneness (with a watch or by taste-testing).
- Cut the garlic clove in half and rub the sides and bottom of the bowl the noodles will be served in(or eaten from) with it. Discard the garlic. Mix soy, Sugar, la jiao, vinegar, and ginger in the bowl with a fork or whisk till Sugar is dissolved. Taste and adjust for sourness, spiciness, saltiness. The sauce should be very strong—it will be diluted once noodles and greens are added.
- About 2 minutes before the noodles are done, add the pea shoots to the water, and stir to make sure all spend some time submerged. What you're looking for is a shoot that's more boiled than blanched, but not completely limp. The shoots should retain a tiny bit of crunch.
- Drain noodles and pea shoots into a colander and immediately add to the sauce. Toss and enjoy. Kinda nice with a flurry of chopped coriander on top.