Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create an account.

Sign in to follow this  
SteveW

Lobster w/braised E-Fu Noodles recipes??

Recommended Posts

My brother who now lives in HK, is looking for a recipe for Lobster w/braised E-Fu Noodles. According to him, it's a classic Chinese dish popular in Hong Kong. And can also be ordered in Chinese restaurants in parts of North America. He's cooking 2 live lobsters on Saturday, & would like to make this recipe.

I've checked all the Chinese cookbooks that I can find, but no luck in finding a recipe for this. Can anybody here help me. The major ingredients for this dish are lobster, chicken consomme/stock, E-Fu noodles(Chinese egg noodles), and ginger & onions. Thanks for any help.

____

Steve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

SteveW, what level of specificity are you and your brother looking for in this recipe? In other words, is he trying to figure out how to make E-Fu noodles from scratch? Or is he planning to buy them pre-made and pre-fried, such that all he's looking for are instructions for combining the remaining ingredients?

For those of you who aren't familiar with E-Fu (a/k/a "long life") noodles, they're flat egg-noodles (wheat flour) that are first deep-fried, and then cooked briefly in simmering liquid. If you buy them in an Asian market, they've typically been fried and bagged, and you just have to do the last step (the simmering, and not for very long). Actually, as I recall, it was explained to me by one E-Fu aficionado that some prefer to dip the E-Fu noodles in boiling liquid twice in order first to remove the excess oil and second to soften them. E-Fu noodles are highly absorbent, so when you add them to wet ingredients they soak up a lot of the moisture and take on that flavor. Whatever the trick is, most restaurants just don't get it. If you're going to fry something and then get it wet, you're walking right on the fence -- you're very close to doing something that is guaranteed to result in a soggy unappetizing mess. I've only had a couple of examples of E-Fu noodles that made me sit up and take notice of the possibilities of the technique, once in Vancouver and once in Singapore. Never in New York, though the Chou Zhou (Flushing, Queens) rendition wasn't bad (at least they got the texture right) nor was the one at Joe's Shanghai (but that was noteworthy mostly for the abundance of seafood and not the underlying noodles).

The term "braised" when applied to E-Fu noodles (which seems to be a common usage on Chinese menus) is probably not accurate. If anything, it's not the noodles that are braised, or at least my understanding is that the noodles are cooked briefly and added at the last minute to whatever the dish is. The underlying dish may be braised, though I wouldn't recommend braising lobster -- shellfish just doesn't take well to that technique.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I've checked all the Chinese cookbooks that I can find, but no luck in finding a recipe for this.

When pursuing your investigations, consider also checking recipes for braised E-Fu noodles with crab (with which such noodles are more frequently combined).   :wink:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From checking my brother's e-mail message again, all he wants are instructions for combining the ingredients. Thanks fat guy, for the background about the E-Fu Noodles. From asking a good friend in HK for help with this recipe, she told me about another interesting way they do it there. It's lobster with noodles & cheese sauce(might be considered a fusion thing).

Thanks cabrales, for suggesting to check recipes for E-Fu noodles with crab. All I did, was look for lobster recipes.

-------

Steve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's what I'd do, as a Western cook, to make this dish. I'm not talking about the authentic method, but rather my French/Nouveau-American take on it.

In the morning, I'd take the two lobsters and, while they're still alive, I'd remove their claws and tails. I'd clean out the bodies and heads and separate them into the two pieces they naturally separate into. I'd roast those heads and bodies in the oven at 375 degrees for about an hour. While that's happening, I'd cook the claws and tails in a pot of boiling water: Assuming 1.5 pound lobsters, first the tails for about 3 minutes, then the claws for about 6 minutes (I want them to be somewhat rare), immediately dropping them into ice water when the cooking time is up. I'd remove the meat from the shells and put it in the refrigerator for later.

If these are spiny lobsters, as are more prevalent in Asia, I'd do the same thing but of course only with the tails.

Then I'd skip the chicken stock altogether because I'd make a stock out of the roasted lobster heads and bodies, with leeks, carrots, celery, and fennel (or any combination of seafood-stock-acceptable aromatic vegetables). I'd let it go for a couple of hours with the shells in it, then I'd strain it and put it back on the stovetop to reduce for a couple more hours until it's extremely rich. At this point I'd salt it to taste, or perhaps fortify it with a little bit of a salty Chinese condiment like soy or XO or oyster sauce.

I'd cook the E-Fu noodles in two changes of salted water, or, if I had extra lobster stock, I'd add some of it to the second pot in order to begin imparting the lobster taste to the noodles. Then I'd stir-fry ginger, garlic, and scallions and then I'd add to the wok or saute pan the noodles and enough lobster stock to make them pretty wet. Once that stock came up to the boil, I'd cut the heat to low and add chunks of lobster meat, stir everything around until the lobster meat is heated through, and serve with sparkling wine from Oregon.

Does anybody know the real way to make this dish?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My brother will be using 2 live Australian lobsters(Spiny lobsters), for the lobster recipe.

Steve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Steve, did your brother make this dish over the weekend? Have you received feedback yet? If so, how did it come out and what recipe did he use.

I was trying to think of American foods that are deep fried and then cooked in some other way. The only ones I could come up with were sausages. There's a frankfurter place in Connecticut, Rawley's, that fries and then grills. And in Wisconsin I've seen Bratwurst techniques that call for frying followed by boiling in beer. Still, I just don't fully comprehend the method. To me, the whole point of frying to to create a crispy exterior, and pretty much anything you do to fried food after that ruins it. So I guess I'm having trouble with the whole E-Fu concept as a sound theoretical culinary proposition.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Steven(Fat Guy), yes my brother did make the Lobster w/braised E-Fu Noodles dish over the weekend(Saturday). Besides posting here, I'd asked a friend or two, & food experts for a recipe of this dish. Eventually a Hong Kong foodie friend supplied me with a recipe(then I forwarded to my brother). Below I'll list the instructions. Instead of using Australian lobsters(his original intention), he got another live Asian spiny lobsters from the area. These were huge(my brother e-mailed me several pictures of the lobsters they purchased). He briefly told me after the meal, that he enjoyed the dish. Given a preference, he told me that he prefers slightly the Asian spiny lobsters(including Australian lobster) over American/Canadian lobsters, by saying the meat is a little sweeter. If anybody has another authentic recipe of this dish, they're welcome to add their input.

Recipe intructions(it's pretty simple):First clean the lobster and cut them into pieces. Blanch the E-Fu Noodles & drain. Fry the lobster in quite a bit of oil, until just slightly undercooked, then remove from pan and pour off most of the oil. In the remaining oil, add some garlic & slices of ginger & spring onions(optional). Add the lobster back in pan with some chicken stock & the noodles & some white pepper. Cook until everything is heated throughout. That's about it.

-------------

Steve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've never had the opportunity to do a serious point-by-point comparison of North American/Breton-style lobsters and spiny lobsters, because so many factors would need to be controlled for. I think the wisest move, though, is always to get what is fresh and local: It's probably hard to get a New England lobster in Asia that's as good as the Asian lobsters in Asia, and vice versa. The one thing I can say categorically is that spiny lobsters make for better sashimi. I think it should also come as no surprise that the local lobsters everywhere are probably best suited to the local cuisine. The sweet, almost shrimpy meat of a spiny lobster probably would not flatter a lobster and truffle risotto, and the subtler, more tender meat of the North Atlantic lobster probably wouldn't be as good in an Asian preparation. Just a guess.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My brother grew up eating the North American lobsters(mostly Canadian), & never ate Asian spiny lobsters until moving to Hong Kong 2+ years ago. The Asian spiny lobsters from all reports are much more tastier than the Caribbeen spiny lobsters. One reason is that the Asian lobsters come from cold waters vs the warm waters of Caribbeen lobsters(hope I didn't get the facts screwed up). Are any live Asian spiny lobsters(including Australian spiny lobsters) available in the US? I suspect the Nobu restaurant in NYC, might get a regular supply.

----------

Steve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think Nobu gets its spiny lobsters from Florida. I imagine it's not so easy to ship live seafood 12,000 miles. Then again, if there's a good enough reason to, somebody is probably doing it.

I don't know if there are different species of spiny lobster, but it wouldn't surprise me: A lobster in Florida and a lobster in Asia wouldn't likely be the same. Atlantic and Pacific fish rarely are. Most lobsters, though, so long as they're the same species, taste pretty similar. Did we already discuss this on another thread, or was I dreaming?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I don't know if there are different species of spiny lobster, but it wouldn't surprise me: A lobster in Florida and a lobster in Asia wouldn't likely be the same. Atlantic and Pacific fish rarely are. Most lobsters, though, so long as they're the same species, taste pretty similar. Did we already discuss this on another thread, or was I dreaming?

See A Balic thread (p. 15) on some Australian and South African spiny lobster observations. The South African langoustes I had tasted very different from those caught within French borders.  Dominique (sic) Bouchet's Les Ambassadeurs at the Crillon, Paris, had French langoustes about 3 months ago -- brilliantly prepared (please call before reliance), but mightily expensive. :wink:  Roellinger's Maison de Brincourt would probably be a good place to have langoustes.

There's some other thread with lobster in its thread name as well. Brittany lobsters are, for me, the most yummy.  :raz:  I think they may be included in the grand seafood platter called "Le Plateau" I have prebooked at Roellinger's bistro "Coquillage" in Cancale for this weekend (??).  (Note for members: this platter requires at least 1 days' advance notice.) :wink:  Note that Cancale is relatively easy to access from Paris -- take the TGV to Rennes (2-2.5 hours), and then drive for 30-45 minutes to Cancale.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is one of my very favorite dishes at Pings Restaurant. I love to get an extremely large lobster (4 lbs. or more -- we have had some 7 and 8 pounders) because it can be cut in unusually shaped large chunks that work particulalry well for this preparation. When Pings cooks it himself it is excellent, and also proof that large lobsters are not necessarily tough and can have great taste.

Large lobsters are quite expensive however, and old (1/8 lb. of growth per year -- yep the 8 lb. lobster is 64). Worth it for a splurge or a special occasion.

A more affordable (and almost as good) option is to get the twin lobster offering (2 lobsters any style for under $30) and ask them to make the e-fu noodle dish from them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ed -- With respect to getting a gastronomic banquet at Ping's together, is that something in your plans? (There might be a range of preferences among members as to price per person, based on another thread)

Also, what wine would tend to go well with the type of lobster dish you described?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Also, what wine would tend to go well with the type of lobster dish you described?

Any good white wine that has a little fruit is suitable for Chinese food. Chenin Blanc, Pinot Blanc, Rieslings, Gewurtztraminer, Prosecco are a few of the usual suspects that I would suggest. Since this is a dish with almost no sugar in the sauce you might even enjoy a White Burgundy or Cali Chard.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm surprised tommy isn't in here with the expected comments on ordering "eff-you" noodles...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

IN HKG many places offer to do lobster any-style. Many places will make you lobster with black bean sauce, which is popular, My favourite is lobster braised green onions with ginger & wine sauce. I had this in Aberdeen.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

  • Similar Content

    • By Lisa Shock
      Years ago, when I visited Tokyo, I ate in a small but fascinating restaurant called 'It's Vegetable' which is now, unfortunately, closed. The chef was from Taiwan, and he made Buddhist vegetarian and vegan dishes that resembled meat. During my visit, several monks wearing robes stopped in to eat dinner. The dishes were pretty amazing. I understood some of them, like using seitan to mimic chicken in stir fry dishes, others used tofu products like yuba, but, others were complex and obviously difficult. One very notable dish we enjoyed was a large 'fish' fillet designed to serve several people. It had a 'skin' made of carefully layered 'scales' cut from nori and attached to the surface. Inside, the white 'flesh' flaked and tasted much like a mild fish. Anyway, apparently Buddhist fake meat meals are very popular in Taiwan and many places, cheap through to fine dining serve them. Yes, if I worked on it for a while, I could probably refine one or two dishes on my own, but, I am wondering if there's a Modernist Cuisine type cookbook for skillfully making these mock meats from scratch? (I have heard that some items are commercially made and available frozen there, much like soy-based burgers are in the US.) I am willing to try almost any offering, even if it's entirely in Chinese. And, I know how to use remailers to purchase regional items from the various local retailers worldwide who do not ship to the US.
    • By liuzhou
      Note: This follows on from the Munching with the Miao topic.
       
      The three-hour journey north from Miao territory ended up taking four, as the driver missed a turning and we had to drive on to the next exit and go back. But our hosts waited for us at the expressway exit and lead us up a winding road to our destination - Buyang 10,000 mu tea plantation (布央万亩茶园 bù yāng wàn mǔ chá yuán) The 'mu' is  a Chinese measurement of area equal to 0.07 of a hectare, but the 10,000 figure is just another Chinese way of saying "very large".
       
      We were in Sanjiang Dong Autonomous County, where 57% of the inhabitants are Dong.
       
      The Dong people (also known as the Kam) are noted for their tea, love of glutinous rice and their carpentry and architecture. And their hospitality. They tend to live at the foot of mountains, unlike the Miao who live in the mid-levels.
       
      By the time we arrived, it was lunch time, but first we had to have a sip of the local tea. This lady did the preparation duty.
       

       

       
      This was what we call black tea, but the Chinese more sensibly call 'red tea'. There is something special about drinking tea when you can see the bush it grew on just outside the window!
       
      Then into lunch:
       

       

      Chicken Soup
       

      The ubiquitous Egg and Tomato
       

      Dried fish with soy beans and chilli peppers. Delicious.
       

      Stir fried lotus root
       

      Daikon Radish
       

      Rice Paddy Fish Deep Fried in Camellia Oil - wonderful with a smoky flavour, but they are not smoked.
       

      Out of Focus Corn and mixed vegetable
       

      Fried Beans
       

      Steamed Pumpkin
       

      Chicken
       

      Beef with Bitter Melon
       

      Glutinous (Sticky) Rice
       

      Oranges
       

      The juiciest pomelo ever. The area is known  for the quality of its pomelos.
       
      After lunch we headed out to explore the tea plantation.
       

       

       

       

       
      Interspersed with the tea plants are these camellia trees, the seeds of which are used to make the Dong people's preferred cooking oil.
       

       
      As we climbed the terraces we could hear singing and then came across this group of women. They are the tea pickers. It isn't tea picking time, but they came out in their traditional costumes to welcome us with their call and response music. They do often sing when picking. They were clearly enjoying themselves.
       

       
      And here they are:
       
       
      After our serenade we headed off again, this time to the east and the most memorable meal of the trip. Coming soon.
       
       
    • By liuzhou
      Today is 元宵 yuán xiāo, the Lantern Festival marking the 15th day of the first lunar month and the last day of the Spring Festival (春节 chūn jié) which begins with the Chinese New Year on the 1st of the lunar month.
       
      Today is the day for eating 汤圆 tāng yuán, sweet glutinous rice balls.
       
      I was invited to take part in a celebration ceremony this morning in what is considered to be the city's most beautiful park. I half agree. It lies in the south of the city, surrounded by karst hill formations, but for me, the park itself is over-manicured. I like a bit of wild. That said, there are said to be around 700 species of wildlife, but most of that is on the inaccessible hills. There are pony rides for the kids and some of the locals are a bit on the wild side.
       

      Park Entrance
       

      Karst Hill
       
      Although the park has beautiful flower displays and great trees, what I love most is the bamboo. Such a beautiful plant and so useful.
       

       
      They had also hung the traditional red lanterns on some of the trees.
       


      The main reason for us to be there was to be entertained by, at first, these three young men who bizarrely welcomed us with  a rendition of Auld Lang Syne played on their bamboo wind instruments - I forget what they are called. They are wearing the traditional dress of the local Zhuang ethnic minority.
       

       
      Then some local school kids sang for us and did a short play in English. Clap, clap, clap.
       
      Then on to the main event. We were asked to form groups around one of four tables looking like this.
       

       
      Appetising, huh? What we have here at top is a dough made from glutinous rice flour. Then below black sesame paste and ground peanut paste. We are about to learn to make Tangyuan, glutinous rice balls. Basically you take a lump of dough, roll it into a ball, then flatten it, then form a cup shape. add some of each or either of the two pastes and reform the ball to enclose the filling. Simple! Maybe not.
       

       
      Some of us were more successful than others
       

       
      These are supposed to be white, but you can see the filling - not good; its like having egg showing all over the outside of your scotch eggs.
       
      Modesty Shame prevents me telling you which were mine.
       

       
      At least one person seemed to think bigger is better! No! They are meant to be about an inch in diameter. Sometimes size does matter!
       
      Finally the balls we had made were taken away to be boiled in the park's on-site restaurant. What we were served were identically sized balls with no filling showing. They are served in this sweet ginger soup. The local pigs probably had ours for lunch.
       
       

       


      The orange-ish and purplish looking ones are made in the same way, but using red and black glutinous rice instead.
       
      Fun was had, which was the whole point.
       
    • By liuzhou
      Today is 小年 (xiǎo nián) which literally means 'little [new] year', but is something more. It takes place approximately a week before Chinese New Year (February 16th this time round - Year of the Dog) and is the festival for the Kitchen God
       
      In traditional animist Chinese thought, there is a god for everything and the kitchen god is responsible for all aspects of, you guessed, the kitchen. Once a year (today), the kitchen god pops back  to report to the god of heaven on the happenings of the last 12 months. Therefore we have to placate him so he makes a good report.  My neighbours are busy preparing offerings of sticky rice and assorted sugary confections for the god, so that when he eats them, his teeth and lips will stick together and he will be unable to report any bad behaviour. An alternative theory suggest the sugary stuff will sweeten his words. Then we'll be OK for another year!
       
      This is  the fellow


    • By liuzhou
      These have been mentioned a couple of times recently on different threads and I felt they deserved one of their own. After all, they did keep me alive when I lived in Xi'an.
       
      Rou jia mo (ròu jiá mò; literally "Meat Sandwich") are Chinese sandwiches which originated in Shaanxi Province, but can be found all over China. Away from their point of origin, they tend to be made with long stewed pork belly. However in Xi'an (capital of Shaanxi), there is a large Muslim population so the meat of choice is more usually beef. In nearby Gansu Province, lamb or mutton is more likely.
       
      When I was living in Xi'an in 1996-1997, I lived on these. I was living on campus in North-West University (西北大学) and right outside the school gate was a street lined with cheap food joints, most of which would serve you one. I had one favourite place which I still head to when I visit. First thing I do when I get off the train.
       
      What I eat is Cumin Beef Jia Mo (孜然牛肉夹馍 zī rán niú ròu jiá mò). The beef is stir fried or grilled/BBQd with cumin and mild green peppers. It is also given a bit of a kick with red chill flakes.
       
      Here is a recipe wrested from the owner of my Xi'an favourite. So simple, yet so delicious.
       

      Lean Beef
       
      Fairly lean beef is cut into slivers
       

      Sliced  Beef
       

      Chopped garlic
       
      I use this single clove garlic from Sichuan, but regular garlic does just fine.
       
      The beef and garlic are mixed in a bowl and generously sprinkled with ground cumin. This is then moistened with a little light soy sauce and Shaoxing wine. You don't want to flood it. Set aside for as long as you can.
       

      Mild Green Chilli Pepper
       
      Take one or two mild green peppers and crush with the back of a knife, then slice roughly. You could de-seed if you prefer. I don't bother.
       

      Chopped Green Pepper
       
      Fire up the wok, add oil (I use rice bran oil, but any  vegetable oil except olive oil would be fine) and stir fry the meat mixture until the meat is just done. 
       

      Frying Tonight
       
      Then add the green peppers and fry until they are as you prefer them. I tend to like them still with a bit of crunch, so slightly under-cook them
       

      In with the peppers
       
      You will, of course, have prepared the bread. The sandwiches are made with a type of flat bread known as 白吉饼 (bái jí bǐng; literally "white lucky cake-shape"). The ones here are store bought but I often make them. Recipe below.
       

      Bai Ji Bing
       
      Take one and split it. Test the seasoning of the filling, adding salt if necessary. It may not need it because of the soy sauce. 
       

      Nearly there
       
      Cover to make a sandwich  and enjoy. You will see that I have used a bunch of kitchen paper to hold the sandwich and to soak up any escaping juices. But it should be fairly dry.
       

      The final product.
       
      Note: I usually cook the meat and pepper in batches. Enough for one sandwich per person at a time. If we need another (and we usually do) I start the next batch. 
       
       
      Bread Recipe
       
       
      350g plain flour
      140ml water
      1/2 teaspoon instant yeast

      Mix the yeast with the flour and stir in the water. Continue stirring until a dough forms. Knead until smooth. Cover with a damp towel or plastic wrap and leave to rise by about one third. (maybe 30-40 minutes).
       
      Knead again to remove any air then roll the dough into a log shape around 5cm in diameter, then cut into six portions. Press these into a circle shape using a rolling pin. You want to end up with 1.5cm thick buns. 
       
      Preheat oven to 190C/370F.
       
      Dry fry the buns in a skillet until they take on some colour about a minute or less on each side, then finish in the oven for ten minutes. Allow to cool before using.
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×