Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Thukpa (Tibetan Noodle Soup)

What with winter sneaking stealthily upon us, and what with the current spate of low temps with the rain and storms, I made myself a huge bowl of thukpa that lasted me three meals. I can't believe I didn't post this recipe before. It's a great dish: easy to make, delicious, uses very basic ingredients, and quite healthy besides. My recipe is one of many thukpa recipes, with small variations on the same general theme. So if you have a slightly different recipe and prefer that, I'd love to hear all about it.


Chicken, pork, seafood of preference (I always use chicken)--chicken and pork should be marinated in lime or lemon juice and salt for at least 30 minutes.

Shallots/pNeyaajkoli or pNeyaajpata ( chopped) OR basil.
Beans of any kind--chopped.
Spinach or palong/palak, which I didn't have.
Garlic+ginger--peeled and minced.
Noodles of any kind OR dough made with flour for dumplings.
Coriander+cumin powder (2:1)
Salt, pepper, sugar.
Soy(a) sauce.
Any other vegetable you fancy.
Dry red chilies+vinegar (optional)
Turmeric, jowan/ajwain powder (optional)

NOTE: this can very easily be vegetarian-friendly by eliminating the first ingred. and adding chunks of potatoes or soybean if one wishes.

How to:
I used simple, inexpensive egg noodles. Usually, the noodles are added directly to the pot, adding body to the thin gravy. However, since local Indian egg noodles have a lot of extra starch that can't be removed from the dish if cooked directly, I parboil and drain them separately.

Cooking noodles separately also gives you the chance to stiry-fry them a little, adding more flavour to them. If using flour, make a smooth, stretchy dough with flour and water. You might want to make filled dumplings or momos as a side dish. The recipe is here.

Heat about half a tablespoon of oil in a large saucepan or a deep wok. When the oil is hot, reduce heat to middling and toss in the proteins minus the lemon juice*. If using seafood, fry them lightly and move on. If using chicken or pork, fry wel with frequent tossing till the meat changes colour thoroughly. If using soya nuggets or tofu, add them after the hard vegetables and fry them for a minute. Now, add the chopped and diced vegetables in sequence, hard vegetables first (carrots, beans), onions and minced stuff next, leafy stuff after that (chopped spinach) and delicate ones (shallots) at the very last minute.

* If using red chillies marinated in vinegar, make a paste of the chilies, a teaspoon of vinegar, a dash of salt and a teaspoon of a flavoured oil, like sesame (til) or olive oil.

When the vegetables are well fried, add the drained noodles and toss like mad till it's all been mixed together very well. Now add as much crushed black pepper as you can stand, salt, and a pinch of sugar. Mix in well. Now sprinkle the cumin, coriander, a tiny pinch of turmeric and fold in well. If the noodles seem undercooked, add half a teaspoon of oil and toss everything well. Finally, all soy(a) sauce according to taste and mix that in well as well. The dish at this stage is ready o be served, but it's just stir-fried noodles.

Add enough water so it stands half an inch above the noodles. Cover and simmer for five to ten minutes, depending on how thick you want your thukpa.

Break an egg on it and scramble, or leave it unscrambled. Or scramble an egg separately and garnish with it, if you like.


Dea-chan said...

Ooh that looks tasty. And, surprise surprise, I posted and soup recipe, and so did Pioneer Woman. I think it's soup weather! :-D

I'll have to try that. It's like a stir fry, only with soup added!

Rimi said...

It *was* soup weather. Now it's just soupy weather. I feel like I'm stewing! After the first meal of the thukpa, I actually had to heat a bit of oil in the skilley, toss the thukpa in, dry off the liquid and have it like shallow-fried noodles. I just couldn't stand to eat hot soupy fodd in hot soupy weather!

And you made beans again! I just can't pull beans off. Teach me properly when you see me next? :D

yasoda said...


Rajesh Kumar said...

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Ayshwarya Singh said...

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