Simply Bill (Bill Granger) is simply jam packed with gorgeous (mostly healthy) recipes that really are suited to everyday simple cooking. Mouth-watering photography brings the meals to life and gives much inspiration. Bill is rather short with words in his recipe introductions and as such the photos need to convey the hidden voice of Bill and they do.
I had a couple of duck breasts to use and was in need of a ‘Chinese take away’ style meal; albeit home cooked as we haven’t a good Chinese restaurant or take away near us anymore. Duck is one of my favourite meats, having a lovely deep but sweet flavour. Surprisingly, once you take the fat of course, it is very low in fat. As always I would urge you to buy free-range duck, my preference is for organic also.
I used Bill’s recipe for Stir fried noodles with beef and sugar-snaps as my basis but changed the beef for duck and the sugar-snaps for a sliced red pepper as I had one lurking in the fridge crying out to be rescued and cooked with. The whole meal from prepping to serving took under 20 minutes making it perfect for those hectic midweek nights when a meal needs to be prepared quickly but without compromising on food ethics, taste or quality.
The recipe calls for egg noodles, but I see no reason why rice noodles couldn’t be substituted if you so wish.
A noodle is food made from unleavened dough that is cooked in a boiling liquid. Depending upon the type, noodles may be dried or refrigerated before cooking. The word noodle derives from the German nudel (noodle) and may be related to the Latin word nodus (knot). As a general rule, Chinese egg noodles are made with wheat, although technically other grains could be used as well. The wheat is mixed with salt, eggs, cornflour, and often oil as well so that it forms a stiff dough. The dough is rolled out and cut into strips of varying widths, depending on the type of egg noodle being made. As a general rule, Chinese egg noodles are quite long, since length symbolizes longevity and good luck.
The stir fry was absolutely delicious, sweet, salty, slightly sour but it lacked one thing – heat. To compensate I scatted the finished plated up meal liberally with freshly ground sichuan pepper.
I wrote in detail about sichuan pepper here, if you’d like to know more. In my opinion the pepper was a vital addition, without it the dish wouldn’t have been ‘dull’ exactly but it would have lacked much needed vibrancy.
The verdict from my noodle loving Dad: 10/10, how soon can we have this again?
I think you could say it was a success!