Taiwanese beef noodle soup

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taiwanese beef noodle soup
Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup
(from the kitchen of Lei Wai)

You may prepare way ahead. Served 27 people on Soup Day.

Part A

6 pounds of beef short ribs. Important – bones are needed in the soup making. Do not separate the bone from the meat. Do not cut.
5 garlic cloves
2 inch knob fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
1 bunch of scallions, cut in 2 inch
5 medium sized tomatoes, I used the vine ripe type. Any kind is fine, the fresher, the juicer is better.
1 tsp Chinese five spice power
2 Tsp brown sugar
rock candy – about 2 Tsp
8 whole star anise pods
2 Tsp brown peppercorns
10 whole dried red chile peppers (the one used for Kung Pao Chicken). Do not break it, let it stay whole
1⁄2 cup rice wine. If you do not have, any kind wine is fine.
5 Tsp dark soy sauce. Add more if necessary
2 Tsp regular soy sauce
12 cups water (adjust during the simmering stage, add a little more if necessary)

Part B

Optional – 1 (14.5 oz) can chicken stock – use this if you think the liquid is not enough to serve

Part C

1 lb baby bok choy – wash and clean, cut to 1 or 2 inches pieces.
1 bag Taiwanese noodles*
One bunch of green onions, a handful of cilantro – cut to size of M&M
Optional – 1/2 bag of Pickled Mustard Green – cut to small pieces, the size of M&M

*(The fresh type you can get at Ranch 99, there are about 15 balls of noodles in one bag. You may freeze the uncooked noodles for a while). I use one ball of noodles (the size of a fist) per person. The beef noodles will be the dish for my family. For the SDCWA soup day, I used 5 units. You may use any kind of noodles including Ramen, but I like the Taiwanese ones the best.

Cooking Instructions

In a large pot, cover the beef short ribs with water and bring to a boil for another 4 or 5 minutes. Drain the water, remove any foaming bone marrows. Clean the pot, and ribs so they are free of marrows. Back to stove, medium heat, put the beef ribs in the cleaned pot, add all the ingredients of part A. Keep an eye on the soy sauce to adjust to your taste. Add more to ensure the meat get a nice dark color, then add water. Bring to a boil. Taste it and add salt to your liking. Reduce heat, simmer for 2 1⁄2 or 3 hours or until the meat is tender.

Wait until the soup is cold. Take the meat out. Do not worry about if the bones fall off. Keep the bones. Use a colander to remove all other ingredients. Save the soup and put the meat back in.

Refrigerate overnight. The flavor will improve and the chili spice will subdue a bit. Skim off the fat.

You may freeze it up to 2 weeks, or, you may keep it in the refrigerator for 3 days.

To serve, before you heat the soup, take the meat out and slice it to 1⁄2 inch pieces (or chunks). You may discard the bones now. Bring the soup to a boil, add the chicken broth if you need more liquid. While the soup is boiling hot, add the meat back to the soup, simmer while you prepare the noodles.

On another pot, boil water. Blanch the bok choy for 2 or 3 minutes based on how tender you prefer. Remove the bok choy. Reuse the water, bring to a boil, cook the noodles to how you like them.

Put noodles to individual bowl, ladle the beef soup into the bowl. Garnish with chopped green onions and cilantro. If you add pickled mustard greens, you may skip vinegar. Otherwise add a tsp of vinegar to the bowl will enhance the flavor. Optional – Add a tsp of sesame oil, this aroma will wake up everyone’s appetite. Serve it when piping hot, enjoy it.

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