Monday 8 April 2024

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Homemade Chewy Chinese Egg Noodles


Serves 2-3

Ingredients:

1. 200g plain flour (I use the organic flour from Føtex Salling with protein 11%)
2. 1 egg (60ml) + water to 85ml
3. 1 tsp salt (4g) - 2% of flour content.
4. 1/2 tsp olive oil (2ml) - prevents the noodles from fraying during extrusion

5. 2l of boiling water for cooking the noodles

Directions:

1. Attach disc with the biggest hole to the Philips pasta machine. 

To mix the ingredients:

2. Run the mixing cycle of 3 mins each for 3-5 times, total 15 mins.

3. Gradually add in the wet ingredients. The mixture will look dry, but do not be tempted to add more liquid.

4. Rest for 1 hour to relax the gluten. Cover with plastic wrap over the feeding of liquid opening. 

(These steps above by the pasta machine are roughly equivalent to combing the flour to a hard dough by hand in the noodle making process.)

To knead the dough:

5. Mix and extrude the noodles using the biggest size disc you have (mine is a biscuit disc 8mm in diameter) to knead the dough - this is so that you won't strain your machine at this point. 

6. Cut into small inches size and add them back to the pasta maker. This step is to use the machine to knead the dough.

6. Your dough now should not stick to your fingers, doesn't fold easily, but elastic in the sense that when you press it with a finger, the indent gradually return to you halfway. If not, let it rest for 30 mins in the pasta machine covered.

(These steps above by the pasta machine are roughly equivalent to kneading the dough by hand in the noodle making process. Unlike kneading by hand, a second rest is not needed, if you are using a electric pasta machine like Philips, since the force of extrusion is so strong.)

To extrude the noodles:

7. Change the noodle disc to angel hair disc or your desired disc and select the extrude setting. The noodles should come out looking nice, not sticky and not frayed.

To cook the noodles:

8. Bring to boil a pot of water, cook one serving at a time for:

- 30 seconds if you are using angel hair disc. 1mm in diameter noodles in soup.
- 1 min if you are using angel hair disc. 1mm in diameter noodles in sauce.
- 2 mins if you are using udon disc 2.5 x 2.5mm noodles in stir-fry.
- 4.5 mins if you are using udon disc 2.5 x 2.5mm noodles in soup.
- 6-7 mins if you are using udon disc 2.5 x 2.5mm noodles in sauce.

9. If you are unable to eat your noodles immediately, drain and rinse them under running cold water immediately to stop the cooking, and gently wash and rub away the excess starch around the noodles with your hands until the water is clear. You will notice that the noodles has pliability, but not sticky. The noodles firmed up. 

Do not soak in the water for too long, as the noodles will turn soggy. To warm up the noodles, add back to the pasta water in the pot with the stove off and dish them out immediately. It will taste chewy, and the noodles will be nice and warm :-)

If you follow these steps with mixing, resting and kneading, your noodles should taste firm, but chewy and springy.

You can eat it on its own with a bit of soy sauce and sesame oil, or use it for stir-fry and soup. Here is a stir-fry recipe: https://youtu.be/mc5Gl9ZycmM?si=vTzISFAJD3QkR-PZ

Storage:

Stores up to 5 days in the fridge or 6 months in the freezer.

Additional Information:

These noodles taste superb, smooth and have a lovely texture as super thin noodles and chewy as thicker noodles such as udon. They taste pretty much like Chinese noodles, even though I didn't put any lye water "kansui" - sodium bicarbonate water. 

For the liquid ingredients, to increase the nutritional value even further, I sometimes use milk instead of water. You won't find any difference in taste of the noodles after cooking.

For the flour, I sometimes add 100g of wholewheat flour, so that with 200g plain flour and 100g wholewheat flour, it is 33% wholewheat. In this case, the total liquid will be 90ml egg + 40ml water or milk, totally 130ml. In this way, this noodles are packed with nutrients from the wholewheat flour, egg and milk.

We use this noodles to make ramen dish or simply eat it with some soy sauce and sesame oil :-)

Oil

Adding oil makes them easier to be extruded out. I like to use olive oil, because it is very healthy, and you can't taste it in the noodles. However, you can use any other neutral vegetable oil or sesame oil as you prefer.

Lye Water

I have tried to make these noodles several times. The lye water "Kansui" in Chinese alkaline water or baking soda doesn't seem to help to make the noodles more elastic, thus I have omitted it. The chewiness and elasticity of the noodles are mainly dependent on the gluten of the flour being formed. It helps to let the dough rest for an hour. On the contrary, adding lye water or baking soda on the contrary discolor the noodles over time - turning them dark in color, and isn't so nice looking. 

Salt

You can make the noodles without adding any salt. However, adding salt to the noodles makes the dough easier to handle, however the quantity of salt is quite critical. It should be 1.5-2% of the flour content, not less, not more, as it makes the noodles brittle. With this percentage, the noodles will not be brittle. 

According to Chembiagro, the optimum adding amount of sodium chloride was around 2% [32, 40], where the overall quality of noodles, including texture, brightness, cooking properties and flavor, was enhanced significantly.

I have tested recipes where salt is added to the flour and recipes where it isn't added to the flour. When salt is added to the flour or egg mixture, you can see gluten developed on the rollers. However, it seems to make the noodles more brittle. When no salt is added during the noodle during the production, the end noodles aren't brittle, more chewy, hold its shape and isn't not sticky. Thus, I have omitted salt from the recipe. I only add salt to the noodles at the cooking stage. 

Also, add the salt to the dry ingredient i.e. the flour and not the wet ingredients i.e. the egg mixture. This is because I have experienced that adding salt to the egg mixture tends to discolor the noodles, giving it a dull shade, especially after some time, although this would not affect the taste.

If you are not adding salt in your dough, use 1 teaspoon for every litre of water when cooking the noodles.

References:























Philips Vivi Pasta machine mounted with bronze PVD Angel Hair mold from Pastidea.


The pasta maker extruding the noodles.

If need be, lightly sprinkle some flour over the noodles to avoid sticking.

Fresh ramen noodles is done :-)

Bring to boil a pot of water and cook noodles for only 15-30 seconds.

Rinse under cold water to avoid over-cooking after dishing out.

Drain and it is ready to be eaten with sauces or used in other dishes :-)
If you are using it later, you could oil it with a teaspoon of sesame oil to keep the texture and prevent sticking.

Saturday 6 April 2024

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Homemade Chewy Healthy Nutritious 50% Wholewheat Noodles Using Philips Pasta Maker


Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

1. 200g Plain flour (I use organic flour from Føtex - Øko Salling Hvedemel)
2. 1 egg (60ml) + water to 85ml (Do not replace water with milk here)
3. 1/2 tsp olive oil (2ml)

4. 200g Organic wholewheat flour from Føtex - Øko fuldkornshvedemel (not Graham flour)
5. 1 egg (60ml) or 2 TBS egg + 2 TBS fresh milk to 90ml
6. 1 tsp olive oil (2ml)

Directions:

Phase 1:
1. Attach udon or spaghetti disc to the pasta machine. 
2. Add 200g plain flour into the pasta maker.
3. Run the mixing cycle of 3 mins each for 5 times.
4. Gradually add wet ingredients of 85ml.
5. Rest for at least 1 hr. (I rested 1 hr 30 min)

Phase 2:
6. Add 200g wholewheat flour into the pasta maker.
7. Run the mixing cycle 1 time.
8. Gradually add wet ingredients for the wholewheat flour of 90ml - (1 egg (60ml) + fresh milk to  90ml)
9. Extrude with udon or spaghetti disc straight away without resting. The noodles should come out perfectly, not brittle, not frayed
10. Bring to boil a pot of water, gently add noodles and cook for 7 - 9 mins, gently stir your noodles to prevent sticking together.
11. Drain in cold running tap water and rub the noodles by hand to wash off all the starch until the noodles runs clear.

Additional Information:

It took me many experiments to make nutritious, healthy wholewheat noodles. I would like a recipe that use eggs and milk. But using milk can be tricky as in larger quantities, it’s considered a tenderizer. It works by attaching to water molecules before they can bind with glutenin and gliadin proteins, interrupting proper hydration of the flour and initially delaying the development of gluten. This contributes to a tender and moist dough.

I could only add milk to the last phase of mixing the wholewheat flour, as I didn't want it to affect the process of developing gluten from the plain. This time around, it worked. Fresh milk gives calcium to the children.

Phase 1 allows the gluten in the plain flour to develop by giving it rest for 1-2 hours without the disturbance of wholewheat flour. Only after that is wholewheat flour added into the nixing chamber of the Philips Pasta Maker. I find this way gives the best looking noodles that is the most chewy for wholewheat noodles.

Adding just 2ml of olive oil helps the noodles from becoming frayed.

References:

This is the flour used for plain floor.

Weigh 200g plain flour

1 egg + additional to 60ml

Beat egg

Add 1/2 teaspoon - 2ml of olive oil.

Add 200g plain flour into the pasta maker.
Run the mixing cycle of 3 mins each for 5 times.
Attach the udon or spaghetti disc to the Phillips pasta machine. Turn on the pasta maker and gradually add in the wet ingredients of 85 ml.

Mix 5 cycles without extruding (After a cycle of mixing, pause and unplug the machine, then plug in and press mix button again for each cycle - each cycle is 3 mins, total 15 mins) until the dough looks like the one above - in small lumps and doesn't stick to your hand.

The mixture should look lumpy like the above. but do not be tempted to add more liquid. The mixture may look dry, but do not be tempted to add more liquid. It will be compact and hold its shape when pressed, but it doesn't stick to your hand.

Cover the openings with a plastic wrap.

I also place a kitchen towel over it. Let it rest for at least 1 hour.

This is how it looks like after it has rested.



Close up.

Add 200g wholewheat flour into the pasta maker.

Run the mixing cycle 1 time and gradually add wet ingredients for the wholewheat flour of 90ml - (1 egg (60ml) + fresh milk to  90ml)

The dough should look sandy like the above, but compact when pressed and doesn't fall apart.


 Extrude with udon or spaghetti disc straight away without resting. The noodles should come out perfectly, not brittle, not frayed

The noodles isn't sticky, just a tiny tiny bit sticky.











If you don't intend to consume it immediately, sprinkle some corn starch on it to prevent sticking. store in an air-tight container for up to 5 days in the fridge and up to one month in the freezer.

When cooking the noodles, do not de-thaw, just place them directly from the freezer into a pot of boiling water.

Bring to boil a pot of water, add salt (for every litre of water, add 1 teaspoon of salt) gently add noodles and cook for 7 - 9 mins, gently stir your noodles to prevent sticking together.

Drain and serve. It's best in sauce, rather than soup. If in soup, must consume it quickly before it turns soggy.

The clean up of the pasta maker is very fast and easy, just wait until the flour in the pasta maker dried up before washing them.

Saturday 30 March 2024

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Homemade Noodles Using Philips Pasta Maker

This recipe is adapted from SoSimYum, Leo's Japanese Dojo and Cooking with Eddy Tseng after several rounds of experimenting.

Serves 2-3

Ingredients:

1. 200g plain flour (I use the organic flour from 365 Supermarket)
2. 60ml egg (an egg is around 55-60ml, I will top up the egg to 60ml) + water to 85ml
3. Approx. 1/2 tsp olive oil (2ml) 

Directions:

1. Attach the largest noodle size disc to the pasta machine. 

2. Turn on the pasta maker and gradually add in the wet ingredients. 

3. Run the mixing cycle of 3 mins each for 5 times (total 15 min). The mixture will look lumpy, but do not be tempted to add more liquid.

4. Rest for at least 1 hour.

5. Mix and extrude with biscuit disc or a disc of a bigger diameter noodle size.

6. Return dough back into the pasta machine and extrude with udon disc. Noodles the come out will be perfect, not frayed, not so sticky, a little sticky. Flour with cornstarch in you are keeping them for next time and not consuming them immediately.

7. Bring to boil a pot of water, cook one serving at a time for 10 mins (check for doneness after 7 mins).

8. Drain and rinse under running cold water immediately (optional).

Detailed Directions:

1. Attach disc with the biggest hole to the Philips pasta machine. 

To mix the ingredients:

2. Gradually add in the wet ingredients. The mixture will look dry, but do not be tempted to add more liquid.

3. Run the mixing cycle of 3 mins each for 5 times.

4. Rest for 1-2 hrs to relax the gluten. Cover with plastic wrap over the feeding of liquid opening. I rest it for 1 hr 30 mins.

(These steps above by the pasta machine are equivalent to combing the flour to a hard dough by hand in the noodle making process.)

To knead the dough:

5. Mix and start by extruding the noodles using the disc with the biggest noodles diameter disc to knead the dough - this is so that you won't stress your machine at this point. Cut into small inches size and add them back to the pasta maker. This step is to use the machine to knead the dough.

6. Your dough should not be sticky, doesn't fold easily, but elastic in the sense that when you press it with a finger, the indent is gradual. You don't have to let the dough rest again.

(These steps above by the pasta machine are equivalent to kneading the dough by hand in the noodle making process.)

To extrude the noodles:

7. Change the noodle disc to udon disc (2.5mm x 2.5mm) and select the extrude setting. The noodles should come out looking nice, not frayed and not sticky. It also doesn't break easily. If you are going to store it instead of eating them immediately, flour it with corn starch so that they will stay separate and not be sticking to each other.

To cook the noodles:

You can eat it on its own with a bit of soy sauce and sesame oil, or use it for stir-fry and soup. 

8. If you are eating on its own:

8a. Bring to boil a pot of water, cook one serving at a time for 10 mins (check for doneness after 7 mins).

8b. Drain and rinse under running cold water immediately to stop the cooking, and gently wash and rub away the starch around the noodles with your hands until the water is clear. You will notice that the noodles has pliability, but not sticky. Do not soak in the water for too long, as the noodles will turn soggy.

9. If you are making udon in soup:

9a. Bring to boil a pot of water, cook noodles for 5 mins so it is not fully done. Then drop it into your soup without having to rinse them in cold water.

10. If you are using the noodles for stir-fry:

10a. Bring to boil a pot of water, cook noodles for 5 mins so it is not fully done.

10b. Drain and rinse under running cold water immediately to stop the cooking, and gently wash and rub away the starch around the noodles with your hands until the water is clear. You will notice that the noodles has pliability, but not sticky. Do not soak in the water for too long, as the noodles will turn soggy. If you are going to wait for quite some time before using them, coat them with some olive oil to prevent them from sticking together after some time.

You are ready to use the noodles in stir-fry dishes :-)

If you have followed these steps correctly with mixing, resting and kneading, your noodles should taste firm, but chewy and springy.


Storage:

Stores up to 5 days in the fridge or 6 months in the freezer.

Additional Information:

Traditional Udon noodles are usually made without egg, but I like my noodles to be more nutritious, especially for our kids.  Thus, this recipe comes with adding an egg. This noodles only uses 3 ingredients in the making, but the noodles tastes superb, smooth and has a lovely texture. I didn't follow the Japanese recipes of adding a lot of salt into the dough, but it still came out great. I find that adding salt makes the noodles brittle during extrusion, cooking and eating. After the noodles are made, I cooked it in salt water instead and it tasted pretty much like Japanese udon. Daddy FECS gave the thumbs-up.

References:



















Attach the largest noodle size disc to the pasta machine. Turn on the pasta maker and gradually add in the wet ingredients. 

Mix 5 cycles without extruding (After a cycle of mixing, pause and unplug the machine, then plug in and press mix button again for each cycle - each cycle is 3 mins, total 15 mins) until the dough looks like the one above - in small lumps and doesn't stick to your hand.

The mixture should look lumpy like the above. but do not be tempted to add more liquid. The mixture may look dry, but do not be tempted to add more liquid. It will be compact and hold its shape when pressed, but it doesn't stick to your hand.

Cover the openings with a plastic wrap.

I also place a kitchen towel over it. Let it rest for at least 1 hour.

This is how it looks like after it has rested.


Close up.

After resting for an hour, turn on the machine, mix and extrude with biscuit disc or a disc of a bigger diameter noodle size.

Cut or tear the dough into approx. 2 inches each.


Add them back into the pasta maker.

Change the disc to Udon disc. and extrude straight away. If there is left-over dough in the machine, press the "Extrude" button and continue extruding the noodles.

Place them in a plastic container dust with some corn starch, especially if you wish to store it for a few days.

Close-up.

Boil a pot of water, add 1 tsp salt per 1 litre of water. Add udon, or frozen udon and could between 10 mins, checking in between for doneness. If you are using the noodles for soup, don't fully cook the noodles, as the noodles will be soggy when you serve them. Cook for 5 minutes instead and dish it out into a noodle bowl like below and add your favorite toppings.

Homemade udon noodle soup :-)
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