Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Soba and mandu bento

I've decided to venture from the "rice" bento after having it in ever bento box I've packed. I found a packet of Cha Soba in my pantry, which is basically green tea soba noodles. I boiled them up and refreshed it under cold water. After draining them well, I curled them into little bite size pieces, as soba tends to stick together in clumps after chilling. Its a wonderful little tip I picked up from Lunch in a box.

I stored the soba dipping sauce in a little container with a screwtop lid. Hopefully there will be no spillages on my way to work tomorrow. I also thinly sliced a shallot and some seaweed which I'll add to the sauce tomorrow.

When I cooked the soba, I threw in the last of my sugar snap peas into the water to quickly blanch which I then dunked into ice cold water to retain the crunchiness. The pattern on the outside of the carrot was done by scraping it with the tines of the fork. We used to do something similar at our restaurant, except we used an old fashion fish scaler to give it that lovely ridged patter.

I also had a bag of frozen Korean seafood mandu, which is similar to gyoza or dumplings. They can be eaten either boiled or panfried. I always thought there was a bit of work to cook these mandus. Well, not compared to making it from scratch. But I always spent about 10mins to cook any of these frozen dumplings, that is until I went to my Korean friend's place one day and saw her make these. I cannot believe what a quick snack it is.

1. Turn on the stove and wack a pan onto it
2. In the meantime, put a few of the mandus on a plate and shove it into the microwave for about 1min whilst the pan heats up
3. Once the mandu is slightly defrosted in the microwave, pour a little oil into the pan and chuck the mandu in.
4. Pan fry until golden on the outside (usually 1-2mins).
5. Eat

The mandu skin is thinner and seems to be semi cooked compared to traditional chinese frozen dumplings. And because of they're generally quite thin, even if the microwave doesn't defrost the mandu properly, it will cook supremely fast in the pan.

Really quick bento box to pack. The most time consuming was the noodle curling and carrot decorating. I can't wait to eat this tomorrow!

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