Saturday, September 29, 2012

Us vs Udon Round 1

Even though the farmer's market is full of autumn delights like apples, squash, and pumpkins, I just haven't felt like that stuff quite yet. Instead, I'm holding on to the cucumbers and tomatoes while I can.

I was given these veggies from a home garden the other day, and it wasn't hard to get rid of those carrots which we just washed off and ate raw. So sweet and earthy! However, for the cucumbers I had to get creative. I tried this recipe, but I wasn't thrilled with the result. I think cucumber salads really need a creamy dressing to take away some of the acidity.

Round 1 of Us vs Udon

Udon Noodles taken from this blog

1 1/4 C unbleached bread floor
5/8 C unbleached all purpose flour
2 tsp salt
1/2 C water

Step 1: This is the most important step. Get some fun dancing music and crank it up loud.

Step 2: Mix all ingredients together in a bowl and knead until the dough starts to stick together.

Step 3: Here is where the real fun begins. Place the ball of dough in a ziploc bag and wrap the bag in a thick towel.

Step 4: Put the towel on the floor and start dancing, stepping or whatever on top of it until it is flattened. I did the running man. Be careful. I almost slipped a few times:)

Step 5: Remove dough from plastic bag, fold into a ball, and repeat. Do this a total of 4 times.

Step 6: On the last time, leave the flattened dough in the bag wrapped in the towel, and let sit for about 4 hours.

Step 7: Remove dough from bag, and fold into a ball, and guess what? It's dancing time again. This time you only have to do it once. We "knee"ed it this time:)

Step 8: Roll the dough out until it is about 1/8 of inch thick, then fold into thirds as shown below. Cut into thin strips.

Step 9: Place in boiling water and cook until noodles are translucent. It's supposed to take 6-7 minutes, but we never got to this stage because our noodles were just too thick. We ate the extremely thick noodles with the rest of our Asian feast anyway.

Score Udon: 1 Us: 0

Here are the other recipes worth trying:

Raw Spring Rolls adapted from this recipe on My New Roots

2 medium carrots
1 small sweet potato
1/4 C sesame seeds
1 tsp oil for stir frying
2 Tbsp chopped fresh gingerroot
1 Tbsp sugar
Squeeze of lemon juice
1/2 cucumber
3 green onions
1/2 avocado
handful of cilantro
1/2 C purple cabbage thinly sliced
About 12 rice paper wraps

1. Julienne the carrots and sweet potato
2. Toast the sesame seeds in a dry frying pan for about 5 minutes ( until golden)
3. Add the oil, ginger, and sugar to the pan, and cook slightly. Add the carrots and sweet potatoes and stir fry for about 5 minutes just to take the edge off.
4. Remove from heat and add squeeze of lemon and stir. Set aside
5. Chop other vegetables into long thin strips and set aside
6. Fill a shallow dish with warm water.
7. Using one wrap at a time, place the wrap in the warm water until it becomes soft (about 1 minute)
8. Remove from water and place on clean surface.
9. Add some of carrot mixture and other veggies to center of wrap and fold as below. Resist the temptation to add too much to each wrap. I did this, and they were much harder to wrap. I made 8 wraps, but I think 12 would have been better.

10. If you want to make them look nice for a platter or something, cut them in half on a diagonal. Enjoy with a dipping sauce such as the peanut sauce below.

Peanut Sauce adapted from this recipe from the Sprouted Kitchen

2 tsp oil
1 small onion finely chopped
1 large clove garlic minced
1/2 C Peanut butter
1/2 C Light Coconut Milk
1/2 Cup water
1 Tbsp Tamari
1 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
2 tsp lime Juice
2 Tbsp Sugar or honey

1. Saute the garlic and onion in the oil in a sauce pan until they are translucent.
2. Add all the other ingredients except lime juice and stir until smooth and warm.
3. Remove from heat, and add lime juice.

Enjoy warm. You can reheat in the microwave for about 30 seconds if you have left overs.

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