Recipe: Szechuan shrimp chow mein
24 jumbo shrimp, shelled, cut in half lengthwise, and deveined
1/2 cup peanut oil
4 shallots, finely chopped
2 teaspoons peeled, minced ginger
1 teaspoon sugar
2 cloves garlic, very thinly sliced
4 scallions, cut into thin rounds
1 teaspoon Szechuan peppercorns finely crushed, or 1 teaspoon chile powder
1 tablespoon Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
1 tablespoon soy sauce
3 tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
8 to 12 ounces egg noodles, cooked, refreshed under cold water, and drained
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1. Rub the halved shrimp with 1/2 teaspoon salt and set them aside in the refrigerator.
2. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a wok over high heat. Add the shallots and ginger and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Add the sugar and garlic, and stir-fry for 1 minute. Add the scallions, peppercorns, rice wine, soy sauce, tomatoes, and pepper, and season with salt to taste. Continue stir-frying for 2 minutes.
3. In a frying pan, heat the remaining oil and, when hot, add the shrimp, stirring constantly for about 2 minutes, until just cooked. Remove them with a skimmer and transfer them to a tray lined with paper towels.
4. Put the noodles into a conical sieve and pour boiling water over them for 5 to 10 seconds, and drain well, Stir the noodles into the contents of the wok and mix well. Add the shrimp and cilantro and stir-fry for 1 minute longer. Serve immediately.
Excerpted from Food for Cooks by Clare Ferguson. Copyright 2003 by Clare Ferguson. Excerpted with permission by Whitecap Books. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.