Shanghai fried spring onion noodles 蔥油麵

Sometimes I will wake up in the morning not knowing where I am. The bed felt the same. The sheets are the same soft cotton whites. The slow breathing and the warmth of my furry favourite girl laying close beside me. My eyelids fluttered awake as the cool outside Spring air seeped in the open window moving the curtains. No. As I laid more awake, it was actually the slow hums from the air conditioner. I knew where I was but I still preferred to imagine the bustling noise of the busy street down below, the normalities that was once so familiar. I smiled at how beautiful the memories were, watching people downstair still in their floral 1980s pyjamas, people slurping noodles from the noodle shop across the street for a quick in-between meal.

Shanghai has always gleamed in my fantasies as a magnificent curiosity, one of the most alluring and mysterious cities. Spring in Shanghai is beautiful and the streets woken up by warmer air and big burst of sun light. The trees along the streets are turning green. I missed bustling street. I missed breathing in the cool air laced with the sweet romance of Spring blooms. Amidst the sky scrapers nestled a network of small undistinguishable streets where laundries, fancy laced bras and red panties dangled from the trees, I found these neighborhoods the most irresistible, where often, the best street food is found round these dirty stinky alley. I missed the street food.

I once had a Shanghainese boyfriend. Shanghainese boyfriends are well-known to be the best in the world. They work, make money, clean and cook for you. They treat their ladies like goddess. They wake up earlier to do marketing and make breakfast for you before you are awake. One morning, before I was awake, he had already gone marketing and made the famous Shanghainese fried spring onion noodles for me. Don't let the simplicity of this recipe fool you. It was so delicious that I begged him to make me this fried spring onion noodles everyday for breakfast for the rest of the week.

This morning, in my pyjamas, I made myself a bowl. This is my kind of noodle. Simple, flavorful and satisfying!

蔥油麵 Congyou mian
Flavoured oil
Big bunch of spring onions (scallions), cut into 2 inches length
Handful of dried shrimps
3-4 cups of canola oil

Soy sauce seasoning (for 1 bowl of noodles)
Wheat noodles
1 tablespoon light soy sauce
1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
1 teaspoon chicken powder
1/2 teaspoon sugar

To make spring onion oil
In a saucepan, heat all the oil on medium heat. Fry the dried shrimp for 1-2 minutes then add all the spring onion and fry till lightly brown. Turn off heat and let cool (do not cook the spring onions too dark and it will continue cooking while cooling). You can use immediately or transfer to a jar when cool. The flavoured oil can be kept for a month or 2 in the refrigerator.

To cook noodles
Set all the seasoning and 2 big tablespoon of the flavoured oil with the spring onions and crispy shrimps into a big bowl. Cook the noodles for 2 minutes or according to the package directions. Drain and toss. Slurp immediately.

- till next post, ss.

Labels: , , , , , , , ,