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The product: wet noodles, medium thickness 2 x 150 g bags suitable for vegetarians 210 calories each pack I buy these on offer, they are usually over £1.50 a pack but I like to get them on a buy one get one free or a speal at £1 a pack. A great store cupboard standby - they don't need to be kept in the fridge - they are lovely in a stiry fry and so easy to use. My favourite recipe is this: mushrooms, peppers, courgette, onion, butternut squash and sweet potato. All washed and cut up small. Chicken (any meat or chick peas if veggie) cut into small pieces. Sweet chili sauce Pack of noodles Heat your wok and add the chicken, fry until golden, add the veg and cook for a few minutes. Add a splash of water and a good dash of sweet chili sauce. Open a pack of noodles, add to the pan and cook for a further 2 minutes, stirring all the time. Serve immediately. My hubby will use both packs for both of us but to be honest, I will use one and like to add some boiled rice which adds a little texture. The noodles are in a vacuum pack so once the outer pack is open, the second inner pack can be used at a later date. A very simple addition to a quick meal that is tasty and nutricious. We use these a lot and love them!
Appearance: they come in a red plastic pack outer two further inner clear plastic packs containing individual portions of ready to wok noodles. I have tried these noodles in a number of dishes and the results vary. I will use 2 different examples to give you the full picture: 1. Teriyaki chicken noodle broth First I make a teriyaki marinade, prick the chicken breast and leave for as long as possible over a 24 hr period (sometimes no time available). Then cook the chicken on a griddle pan. I make a very light vegetable stock and add fresh ginger and simmer for a few minutes. Season to taste. Add thinly sliced, crunchy vegetables (carrots, peppers, onions etc.) and finally cut open the noodles and add them to the broth. Let the lot simmer for a few more minutes while I slice the cooked chicken breast and some chillies. Pour the noodle broth into a large bowl. Place the chicken and the chillies on top and serve. For this dish, these noodles are absolutely perfect. They quickly absorb the flavour of the broth and wrap around the veg giving a subtle chew to go with the crunch. They are filling but the portion size is just right and the fact that they come in individual portions is great. Verdict - highly recommended for noodle broth. 2. Singapore noodles. I chop the vegetables and slice the meat. Prepare a spice mix and turn on the electric wok. Cut open the noodles and leave on a plate to my right. I pour in the oil and fry the veg and the meat. When the meat is cooked through I add the spice mix and soy sauce. Then finally I add the noodles. And this is where I found the flaw. In my previous example, the noodles seamlessly integrated into the dish. They readily immersed into the broth and interacted with the other ingredients. In the stir fry however, it was much more difficult to get the noodles to disperse. It might be the way that they are packaged. They are slightly oily to the touch and pretty compact so there is a little bit of wrestling to do before you add them to your meal. So not exactly "ready to wok". Verdict: They do taste great in the dish but if you don't do some wrangling pre-addition, they can break or clump together.
We have always bought noodles in our house, but they have usually been the sort that you add to boiling water for a couple of minutes and then serve. I was curious to try the ready to wok noodles as I was thinking it might be a much better way to mingle the flavour through the noodles and my husband would be happy as it would be slightly less washing up. We like one pot meals. These are currently available in Tesco and Asda for £1 a pack, and normally retail for £1.25. I find this price a little high myself, but I thought it worth giving them a trial. I bought the noodles and a sachet of black bean sauce and decided to do a pork stir fry. I followed the instructions from the noodle packet. Firstly I heated the oil and then stir fried the pork. I then added some onion, carrot and pepper. After this was cooked, the noodles were ready to add. I had to use 2 packs to make enough for myself, my husband and our 2 and 4 year old children. This equalled 4 x 150g servings of noodles. I don't know if we have unusually large appetites, but as our main meal, I would not have served less than this. The packets looked really small before cooking, and I didn't imagine them swelling much. Inside the red outer packet, the noodles come in 2 servings which are each then packaged further inside another layer of plastic. The noodles are completely different to the ones that you rehydrate in water. They already look ready to eat. They are not dehydrated, and you just need to heat them up to make them ready to eat. The outer packet had a little perforation to open easily. The inner packs were too well packaged and I needed to find scissors to open them. They were kind of shrink wrapped. A bit like those bags where you put clothes in and then suck out the air. A bit weird as it wasn't completely like that but a bit like that. (Sorry, I realise that doesn't sound that useful.) The instructions said to add the noodles and then add the sauce. I found doing it this way the noodles straight away started to stick to my wok. I don't know if I had it too hot, but I am conscious that it can be horrible to clean stuck on food off. After adding the sauce and having a good stir, this then stopped happening which was a big relief. (I have just noticed on the pack I could have also cooked them in the microwave, which is probably how I will do it in future.) What I liked about these noodles were they were very quick to cook through. They were very evenly coated in the sauce I was using, and this gave them a different taste and appearance for what is essentially the same type of product. They didn't clump together like normal noodles do. What I found I disliked was that they were a bit oilier having been cooked in the wok, and also it was quite hard to cook that many noodles as well as meat and veg in my wok which is by no means small. I would think it is better/easier to heat them through in a smaller portion. My biggest dislike is the amount of plastic packaging they came in. All of this is not recyclable, although it is made from recyclable material. Overall, I liked them but I don't think they will be a regular purchase as they are more expensive than noodles you boil, and not much more convenient.