Thursday, February 3, 2011

Beef Noodle Soup

One of my brother's favorite dishes is beef noodle soup.  We always go to Mandarin Noodle House when he's home to eat it, and one year I tried to make it when he visited.  Unfortunately I added too much tomato and didn't start it early enough, so it wasn't as good as I had hoped.  He showed his love for me by eating it anyway.

Every other time I've made this I've had great results.  I usually use miso instead of Chinese bean paste and I don't add cilantro (personal preference).  My only other tip is to not use too much tomato.  Eesh!  I usually throw this in a slow cooker to stew for ~6 hours on low, but you can easily use a Dutch oven or some other pot on the stove.  The house always smells delicious when we make it.

Thanks to Tasty Meals At Home!
Beef Noodle Soup (Niu Rou Mien)

What You Need
  • 2 lbs Beef Shank/Short Ribs and Beef for Stewing (Optional)
  • 2-3 tomatoes
  • 1 Whole Onion
  • 5-6 Cloves of Garlic
  • 2 big pieces of ginger
  • 3-4 stalks of Green Onion
  • 2 tbsp Chinese Bean Paste
  • 5-6 Star Anise pieces
  • Noodles
  • Spinach
  • Cilantro
  • 1/2 cup of Soy Sauce (Dark and Regular)
  • 2 cups Beef Broth
  • 5 cups of water
What to Do
First start by washing your beef under cold water and removing any excess fat. Bring a big pot of water to a boil and flash boil your meat in order to remove any excess membranes/harmful/particles from your meat. This makes your final soup clear and cleaner.
Next, cut your onions, tomatoes, ginger, and garlic into semi-large pieces and begin frying them in a big pot with some oil. We like to use vegetable oil but any will do.
After your vegetables have been cooking for a few minutes, add in the Chinese Hot Bean Paste and incorporate everything. After getting some color on your vegetables, add in the beef and star anise.
Cook everything for another minute or two and add in your dark and regular soy sauce (half cup each). Next cover everything with water–add enough water to cover the soup. You can use 1/2 water and 1/2 beef broth if you want a more meaty flavor. You can also adjust the water levels later if the soup is too salty.
Finally add in some green onion, bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer.
It will take at least 2hours to cook everything, 4-6 hours of stewing for the best results.
We like to cook the stew the night before actual serving so that all the flavors can come together. On the day you want to serve everything, just simply bring the broth to a boil, cook some Chinese noodles and spinach and assemble!

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