52 weeks of cooking – Noodles
One of the great things about working on tall ships are the friends you make, those friends become your boat family and you’ll always be connected through the journey you took together. You can’t compare your boat family to your land friends because you haven’t shared the same experiences in the same way you do on tall ships. Not only do you work with these people and have to trust them with your life, you live with them and end up sharing everything. The only downside to these friendships is that when you settle down to a regular land life you may have many miles between you.
Most of my oldest tall ship friends from Bounty all live on the east coast. I don’t get to see them often, but we are getting to that age where every year or so someone is getting married so we get to have mini reunions. This past October one of my friends got married in Maine, no way was my husband and I going to miss it, she was my maid of honor. We flew over there, met up with our old Bounty family and had an amazing time. These are the type of friends you could not talk to for a year and when you meet up again it’s like no time has passed. Since we had the time we stayed with friends in Massachusetts for a few extra days.
We went to Boston for the day and our friends showed us around the city. We share a love for great food so they had a few spots lined up that they wanted to share with us. The best one was a small restaurant in Chinatown serving these amazing noodles. I’d never had anything like them before, chewy noodles coated in an oily tangy sauce with lots of garlic. My husband and I shared a portion because we were going to eat again later, but we definitely fought over that last noodle. As soon as I got home I knew this was a dish I wanted to master.
Like a lot of Chinese food this dish is all about preparation, as soon as that’s done the cooking and assembly processes happens quickly. The dough for these hand pulled noodles takes a little bit of time, but that’s mostly just letting it rest in between kneading sessions. Then water is brought to a boil while you stretch and bang the dough into long noodle strips. While the noodles cook oil is heated and a little sauce is put together before pouring the almost smoking oil on top of your noodle bowl.
Homemade noodles are a must with this dish and the sauce can be tweaked to fit everyone’s personal tastes with more or less spice and vinegar. I’m a garlic lover but I wouldn’t recommend using more than 2 cloves of garlic, the hot oil poured over only cooks them a little bit and you can be left with a lot of raw sharp garlic bite.
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