Japchae (Korean Sweet Potato Noodles)
The thing with japchae is that it is not difficult to make at all, but it can be a little time-consuming considering all the slicing, chopping and separate stir-frying involved. I always have to include spinach in my japchae and for today, I added some fish cakes for a slightly different twist - usually beef is the most popular protein of choice. If I am not mistaken, seafood japchae is more popular in the Northern regions of Korea. I loved the savoury fish cakes with the slightly sweet stir-fried noodles (dangmyun) which also added some different texture.
3.5 ounces dangmyun (cellophane noodles)
Sesame oil, in varied amounts (please refer below)
Light Aloha shoyu, in varied amounts (please refer below)
1 cup fish cake slices
6 fresh shitake mushrooms, sliced (can substitute with dried, allow time for soaking)
1 carrot, cut into matchsticks
1 bunch of spinach
1 stalk green onion, sliced
2 eggs, beaten with a pinch of salt
1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
Soak the noodles in warm water for at least 30 minutes or until soft. Once soft, drain and place in large mixing bowl. Add 1 tbsp light soy sauce and 1 tbsp sesame oil, mix well to marinate.
While the noodles are soaking, marinate the mushrooms slices with 1 tbsp light soy sauce and 1 tsp sesame oil.
Blanch the spinach until wilted in boiling water. Remove and drain. Once cool enough to handle, squeeze out excess water with your hands. Add 1 tbsp soy sauce and 1 tsp sesame oil and mix well to marinate.
In a flat pan, make a thin omelette. Once cool enough to handle, roll up and slice thinly.
In a hot pan or wok, add 2 tbsps of cooking oil. Add garlic and stir-fry. Once aromatic, add mushrooms and fish cakes. Stir-fry for about 1 minute. Spoon out the mushrooms and fish cakes onto a plate. Set aside.
With the same wok or pan, stir-fry the carrots and green onion for about 30 seconds as we only want the carrots to soften slightly. Add in the spinach and stir-fry for 30 seconds. Finally add in the mushrooms, fish cakes and the noodles. Stir-fry to mix everything well together. Dish out.
Top with sliced omelette and toasted sesame seeds. Serve