Tag Archives: noodles

Tangy tofu noodles


Something weird happened. I made tofu and I liked it. I don’t like tofu. It’s always seemed to me like a punishment for not eating meat, a banishment from taste and texture. But not this time! It’s all very exciting.

Some context: my fridge-freezer has started humming loudly, every so often pausing to make a loud bang as if it’s trying to escape from the wall. I thought it was haunted before, when it did this to a far lesser degree, but if there is indeed a haunting that ghost is now very angry. Apparently the first stage in exorcising it is to defrost the whole thing, which means eating all that stuff I bought well-meaningly and then never used. Thus tofu. But don’t run away! It’s tasty.

For the tofu:
396g pack of firm tofu
4 tbsp soy sauce
3 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tsp dried powdered ginger
1 tsp granulated sugar
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 tbsp vegetable oil

For the noodles:
3 packets of fine noodles (4 for a big meal)
1 red pepper
250g fine beans
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 tbsp vegetable oil

Serves 4
Calories: 380
Takes 30 minutes to make, plus 30+ minutes for marinating

Stage one: Drain the tofu and cut it into bite-size pieces. Mix the soy sauce, vinegar, ginger, sugar and garlic until the sugar has dissolved, then put it in a bowl with the tofu and marinate for at least 30 minutes, giving it a stir half way through so all the tofu absorbs the flavour.

Stage two: Heat the vegetable oil in a large frying pan then remove the tofu from the marinade with a slotted spoon and fry for 10 minutes, flipping the tofu so that each side is browned. It won’t go particularly crispy, but it will be very tasty. When the tofu is done, remove it from the heat and set aside. Meanwhile, cook the noodles according to the instructions on the packet and drain.


Stage three: In a saucepan, fry the beans, pepper and 1 clove of garlic in the vegetable oil and 1 tbsp soy sauce for 5-10 minutes until they go soft. I left mine unattended for a couple of minutes and they caught slightly, but that’s okay, it gave them a hint of smokiness that I actually liked. What I’m getting at here is that this may all seem a bit complicated but if a bit goes wrong it doesn’t matter.


Stage four: Combine the vegetables and noodles in the pan and mix with the leftover marinade and the soy sauce, sesame oil and rice wine vinegar and mix well. Dish up into bowls and then serve the tofu on top. This works just as well cold as hot!



The fastest noodles ever


This recipe is my idea of fast food and pot noodles rolled into one. I challenge you to go to a takeaway place, queue up at lunch time and get your food faster than you can make this meal. You can scale it up and down for as many people as you need to feed. You can make it with minimal ingredients and cooking tools. It’s healthy. It’s cheap. And yes, it’s ugly. I don’t care. It has a great personality. It’s not the best noodle dish you’ll ever eat, but when you’re eating it that fast I don’t mind.


1 serving of noodles (I use Sharwood’s dried egg noodles)
80g frozen peas (or whatever veg you have in the fridge/freezer!)
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 medium egg
a sprinkle of powdered ginger

Serves 1, but easily multiplied
Calories: 390
Takes about 8 minutes from start to finish

Stage one: Start to boil the kettle. Meanwhile, get out a pan and put the noodles and peas in it. Take out the rest of the ingredients so they’re at hand for stage two. When the kettle is boiled, cook the noodles and peas on the stove. This will take about 3 minutes.


Stage two: While the noodles and peas are cooking, put all the rest of the ingredients together. I do this in a glass. Then, using a fork, mix it all together.


Stage three: The noodles are done! Drain them, and then return them to the pan with the eggy mixture. Put everything back on the heat and stir so that the eggy mixture scrambles and cooks onto the noodles. This will take about a minute. And now you’re done! Eat.


Teriyaki salmon with broccoli and beans


Today, I walked into my hallway and smelled gas. A very nice man was sent along by British Gas to tell me that the boiler is very dead in a dangerous kind of way, and to switch the gas off until we get a replacement mid next week at the most. Fun times. I am now heating the flat using the tumble dryer and a portable heater. Today of course would also be the day I planned a meal that entirely relies on the stove. Did you know that attempting to cook a marinade over a vanilla scented candle from Asda really doesn’t work that well? On the upside, today I relearned various things about fire that I knew when I was in school but forgot since, such as that putting a pan down on top of a lit candle will make the candle go out.

Since all I have to cook with is now an oven and a vanilla scented candle, in sum this is not really the way I had intended to cook any of this food. But actually, I think that the salmon and vegetables are the better for it. The irony of my blog’s title is not lost on me, however.

4 fillets of salmon
3 tsp brown sugar
1 tsp rice wine vinegar
4 tbsp dark soy sauce
2 tbsp sesame oil
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 square inch ginger, grated
200g tenderstem broccoli
200g fine beans

Serves 4
Calories: 360
Takes 5 minutes to make the marinade, 20+ minutes to marinate, and 15-20 minutes to bake

I serve this with noodles or rice. Because I have no stove, the only thing I could cook was bean vermicelli noodles. I’m not wild about them, but used them because all you do is add hot water. I suggest egg noodles or rice with this dish, though. I’ll prompt you when to prepare your carb of choice and how I would serve it for maximum flavour.

Stage one: Put the sugar, vinegar, soy sauce, oil, garlic and ginger in a small pan. Cook over a low heat until the sugar is dissolved and the garlic and ginger are fragrant. This should only take a minute or so, unless you’re cooking by candle, in which case it takes somewhat longer. Meanwhile, put the salmon in a bowl face-down. When the marinade is done, pour it over the salmon. Cover and put it in the fridge. I did this around lunch time, which meant I left it in the fridge for 6 hours or so. You don’t need to wait that long, maybe 20 minutes, but the longer the better.


Stage two, some time later: Preheat the oven to 190C/fan170C. In a roasting pan, place the fine beans and the broccoli and then gently lay the salmon on top. Admire the lovely red/orange colour that well-marinated salmon goes. Drizzle the remaining teriyaki sauce over everything. Pop in the oven for 15-20 minutes until the salmon flakes easily.


Stage three: Meanwhile, prepare your carb of choice. See how nicely that timing works out? I made noodles.

Stage four: OK, serving up. Take the salmon out of the pan and put it on your plate. Put your noodles/rice/other carb into the pan and give everything a mix around. This will soak up that lovely leftover sauce. Eat!