To truly experience the wondrous joy of Chinese New Year (this year being the Year of the Horse), one must surround themselves with color, joy, laughter and great food. You don't have to be Chinese to celebrate this festive time of the year and many cities across American will be holding parades to honor the Year of the Horse during the 15-day celebration. Personally, I can't think of a better way of celebrating than with some classic dishes from China (real Chinese food, not Americanized Chinese food).
When you are walking through the various parts of China, you will always come upon street food vendors. One time when I was rapidly gaining weight on one of these treks, I had this young man come up to me and offer a bowl of noodles and in broken English told me "good luck." Ya know, the words "good luck" aren't the most endearing when someone is handing you food to eat.
My translator informed me that what I was being offered was Good Luck Noodles. What the hell, I took the bowl, gave the kid some money and figured that in this line of work I can use all the luck I can get. To make a long story short, I don't believe the noodles brought me any luck but I did buy a second bowl.
To truly get the freshness of this soup you will want fresh ramen noodles. You can buy these at any Asian market. If you have to use the packaged kind, try to buy the ones that come without those little packs of flavored salt as they are nothing but poison. This is a very simple soup to prepare yet its flavors are quite enticing and very exotic. Due to the fact you will be using medallions of corn, the broth will have the slight sweetness of the corn milk. Add this flavor with the toasted sesame oil, the green onion and the subtle acidity of the lime and you really do have something special.
Ingredients needed to make Chinese Good Luck Noodles (serves 2 - in case you get lucky):
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 1 ear corn, cut into medallions (thin slices of corn-on-the-cob)
- 1/2 tsp. toasted sesame oil
- 2 cups fresh ramen noodles, cooked
- 1 green onion, minced
- 2 thin slices lime (do not use lemon)
- Into a medium saucepan over medium heat, add the stock, corn and sesame oil and cook 5 minutes.
- Place the freshly cooked ramen noodles into serving bowls.
- Ladle the chicken stock and corn over the noodles and let sit 3 minutes (this will heat the noodles naturally)
- Sprinkle some green onions over the noodles, top with a slice of lime and enjoy!
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