I named this dish ' The Monk ' , because it's inspired by food I have often eaten and enjoyed at a restaurant named 'The Monk' in my hometown - Gurgaon , where they do fantastic Teppanyakis , Stir-Fries and Rice Bowls !
This is another 20 minute one bowl meal - most ingredients as always readily available . Cook with abandon - all it takes is to adjust some salt / chili and trust me , things tend to work themselves out into very tasty fare when cooked with pleasure and not fear !
Soak a 5-6 Shitake Mushrooms in warm water for about an hour . They will double in size and turn fleshy . Rinse well , squeeze all water and chop into large chunks - 3 per mushroom .Set aside for later use .
Parboil 200 Grams Broccoli florets in water to which 1 teaspoon sugar has been added - that keeps greens looking green ! Boil 30-45 seconds , drain and plunge in iced water to prevent further cooking .Set aside for later use .
Take a portion of Udan ( or any other flat noodles , Udan is best ) Noodles , boil for 3-4 minutes , or till al dente , drain and cool in iced water .Set aside for later use .
Slice 6-10 Almonds , fry in some Chili Oil , Set aside for later use .
The Sauce .
2 Tablespoons Light Soy sauce.
2 Tablespoons Chili Oil ( or another if you don't have it handy ).
8-10 Whole Garlic Flakes.
4 Dried Red Chillies .
1 to 1 1/2 Tablespoons Black Bean Paste - I use Salted Dried Black Beans ( Delhi people go to INA ! )
1 Teaspoon Sambal paste / Chili paste / powder.
2 Tablespoons Mirin ( INA ) or 1 tablespoon Sugar . ***
1 Tablespoon Minced Garlic - To be used later , not in sauce.
In the chili oil fry the garlic till translucent , add dried chillies till they turn blackish ( 10 seconds ) . Remove chillies , add black bean paste / dried beans . Saute 1 minute , add about 1 1/2 cup water and cook covered till it reduces to half . Cool , liquidise , add mirin/sugar , and sambal paste / substitute . Cook another minute . Taste and adjust flavors. Sauce should be semi runny .
At this stage check the flavor of the sauce . Should be strong - vegetables and noodles yet to be added !
In a wok , add a bit of oil , add 1 tablespoon minced garlic , when garlic turns translucent add half the sauce , it will thicken . Now add more tablespoon mirin / sugar . Add Mushrooms , cook covered 1 minute , add broccoli . Cook another minute . Add half of the remaining sauce . End Cooking !You now have a quarter of the sauce left !
Take the balance sauce , heat in a pan . Stir in the drained noodles . Cook covered over high heat for 30 seconds . Plate the noodles . Spoon on the vegetables onto the noodles . Sprinkle the almonds and blackened chillies .
Enjoy a fantastic dish !
At every stage taste sauce etc to adjust flavors to suite your taste buds .
*** Mirin - A low-alcohol, sweet, golden wine made from glutinous rice. Essential to the Japanese cook, mirin adds sweetness and flavor to a variety of dishes, sauces and glazes.