For the most part, I love living in the quiet countryside of Virginia, miles away from traffic jams, crowded streets, and noise pollution. The only times I really have second thoughts about living out in the sticks is when I get a food craving and there’s no restaurant even remotely close enough to get the dish in question, be it a fragrant Indian thali, a platter of vegan sushi, or, in this particular week’s craving, hakka noodles.
Good thing I know how to make them myself! The recipe is in my book, Vegan Without Borders — the gorgeous hardcover book filled with gorgeous photos by Sara Remington that LOOKS like a coffee table book, but is also a super cookbook filled with my favorite global recipes.
If you’ve never had hakka noodles, why not give them a try? Hakka noodles can be found in well-stocked Asian or Indian markets – look for Wai Wai or Ching brands. If unavailable, you can substitute angel hair pasta or rice or wheat vermicelli.
The texture of this dish should be dry rather than saucy, as the noodles absorb the flavorful sauce. For a less spicy dish, use less red pepper flakes and sriracha (or leave them out). For extra protein, add diced extra-firm tofu or thin strips of seitan. This recipe is from Vegan Without Borders by Robin Robertson © 2014, published by Andews McMeel Publishing.
8 ounces hakka noodles or angel hair pasta or rice or wheat vermicelli
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon neutral vegetable oil
1 small yellow onion, thinly sliced
4 cups shredded cabbage
1 small carrot, coarsely shredded
1 small red bell pepper, seeded and cut into thin strips
3 cloves garlic, minced
4 scallions, minced
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon natural sugar
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup sliced mushrooms (optional)
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
3 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons tomato puree or ketchup
1 teaspoon sriracha or other hot chili sauce
1 1/2 tablespoons rice vinegar
Cook the noodles according to the package directions. Drain well, rinsing under cold water, then transfer the well-drained noodles to a bowl. Toss with the sesame oil and set aside.
Heat the vegetable oil in a wok or large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, cabbage, carrot, bell pepper, garlic, scallions, and ginger and stir- fry for 4 minutes. Sprinkle with sugar and season with salt and pepper to taste. Add the mushrooms, if using, and red pepper flakes and stir-fry for 2 minutes longer. Add the cooked noodles, soy sauce, tomato puree, sriracha, and vinegar, and stir-fry for a few minutes longer to mix well and heat through. Taste and adjust the seasonings, if needed. Serve hot.
Chef’s Tip: To make this dish in a flash, buy bagged shredded cabbage and carrots instead of shredding your own.