Chap Chee (Korean Mixed Vegetables with Beef and Vermicelli Noodles)
Monday, 25 May 2009
At a glance
4 to 6
3/4 pound flank or sirloin steak, trimmed and thinly sliced against the grain in strips 2-inches wide
1/4 cup dried wood ear mushrooms
4 ounces vermicelli noodles
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 cloves garlic, sliced
1 tablespoon grated ginger
4 green onions, finely chopped including some of the greens
4 Thai chiles, stems removed, minced or substitute serrano or jalapeño chiles
1 small carrot, julienne cut in 3-inch long pieces
1 small red bell pepper, julienne cut in 3-inch long pieces
1 1/2 cups chopped fresh spinach
1/2 cup straw mushrooms
1/2 cup bean sprouts
Garnish: Chopped fresh cilantro
Toasted sesame seeds
Combine all the ingredients for the marinade in a bowl and add the beef. Toss to coat and marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes.
Place the wood ears in a bowl and cover with warm water. Allow the mushrooms to steep for 30 minutes to soften. Drain the mushrooms and discard the water.
Cook the noodles according to the directions on the package, drain and keep warm.
Combine all the sauce ingredients in a bowl and stir to mix.
Heat a wok or heavy skillet over medium-high heat, add the oil and when hot, add the meat and quickly stir-fry until browned, about 2 minutes. Remove and keep warm.
Add the garlic and ginger to the wok and stir-fry until fragrant. Add the onions and chiles and stir-fry for an additional 2 minutes. Next add the carrots, bell peppers, and spinach and stir-fry for 2 more minutes.
Stir the sauce into the wok and add the noodles. Continue to stir-fry until the noodles absorb the sauce. Return the beef and cook until all ingredients are hot.
To serve, place the Chap Chee on a large serving platter, garnish with the cilantro and sesame seeds and serve with the kimchi on the side.
Whether you call it Chap Chee, Chap Chae, or Jap Chae (a combination of Japan and China),
this is a very popular dish that combines a variety of textures, colors, flavors, simple seasonings along with one of their staples, noodles. Koreans love beef and serve it more often that pork and chicken, and they never eat lamb or goat. Garlic, ginger, and sesame are common to most Korean beef dishes and this one is no exception. Traditionally, Chap Chee is spiced up with a bowl of kimchi. Available in Asian markets, it’s a fiery hot condiment containing fermented vegetables such as cabbage and turnips. An acquired taste! The meat will be easier to thinly slice if put in the freezer for about 30 minutes and have all the ingredients assembled before stir-frying.