NOVEMBER 2019: A KITCHEN TOOLS PHD CLASS
LULU’S LUCKY LO MEIN NOODLES + CRAZY DELICIOUS CARAMELIZED CABBAGE + CHINESE SWEET SOY SPLASH + GREEN TEA SMOOTHIES
This week’s recipe incorporates some exciting techniques we can’t wait to share with you. Not to mention, it’s one of Chef Erin’s daughter Lulu’s absolute favorite thing to eat. Lulu orders lo mein anytime it’s on the menu, and she loves making her own version at home with julienned vegetables and a quick sweet-soy sauce. YUM!
Let’s talk about the first technique: soaking dried pasta in heavily salted water. Erin learned of this trick years ago as a way of coaxing a sort of “freshness” out of dried pasta from her "adopted Italian mama". Brining dried pasta cuts down on the time it needs to boil while seasoning the pasta perfectly. It’s awesome for Sticky Fingers Classes because it teaches our kid chefs a lesson in science, one of the many purposes of salt in cooking, and it makings cooking the pasta a much faster affair so that you can focus on other skills with your students, like slicing, dicing, chopping, and shredding - all skills we focus on in our Kitchen Tools PhD-themed classes.
The second technique we’re excited to highlight: caramelizing vegetables. How much did your kid chefs love the taste of green onions after they were charred in our recent recipe for Yankee Doodle Pasta Salad? We’re hoping for the same results with Caramelized Cabbage. Caramelized cabbage is crazy delicious - it brings out the sweetness of the vegetable, which kids love, of course! Have them taste raw cabbage as they’re slicing it. Something happens when we cook it in a skillet. Cabbage contains different types of sugars, and these sugars break down and react with each other as the vegetable releases its water when exposed to heat. The sugars concentrate as the vegetable softens, making it sweeter, more tender and really, really good.
One last thing: noodles are a huge part of Chinese culture, and they’re almost always served long and uncut, symbolizing a long and prosperous life. We’re snapping our noodles in half as a way of fitting them into a mixing bowl to soak in our classes at schools this week; but it might be fun to tell your kids in your home kitchens that REAL lo mein is made with fresh and long noodles, and to eat them this way is to symbolize a lucky, long, and healthful life. What's not to love about that? Slurp together and enjoy!
All the Luck, Happy + Healthy Cooking, Chef Erin & Chef Jacqui
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