Beef Chow Fun

1/2 pound (226 grams) beef skirt, flank, sirloin, or tenderloin
1 tablespoon light soy sauce (*Footnote 1)
1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine (or dry sherry)
2 teaspoons cornstarch

Sauce

2 tablespoons Shaoxing wine (or dry sherry)
2 tablespoons light soy sauce
1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
1 teaspoon sugar

Stir fry

(Optional) 1 batch broccolini (or 1 small head broccoli), tough ends removed and chopped into bite sized pieces (or use broccoli with gai lan (Chinese broccoli), kale, or bok choy)
7 ounces (200 grams) dried rice noodles
2 tablespoons peanut oil (or vegetable oil)
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon minced ginger
1/4 white onion, sliced
1 cup bean sprouts
4 green onions, chopped
(Optional) 2 teaspoons sesame oil

Slice beef against the grain into 1/8-inch (1/3-cm) thick pieces or 1/4-inch (1/2-cm) strips, and transfer the pieces to a small bowl. Add the light soy sauce, Shaoxing wine, and cornstarch. Use your hand to gently mix the beef and the added ingredients, until the beef is coated with a thin layer of the mixture. Let marinate for 15 minutes while preparing the rest of the ingredients.

Combine all the sauce ingredients with 2 tablespoons water. Mix well and set aside.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Blanch the broccolini (or broccoli) until tender, 1 minute or so. Drain and set aside. Reserve the boiling water to cook the noodles.

Cook or soak the rice noodles according to the instructions until cooked through, but still a bit chewy inside. Rinse rice noodles with cold water and drain. To avoid sticky rice noodles during stir fry, add 1 teaspoon sesame oil to the drained noodles. Gently toss noodles by hand to separate and evenly coat them with a thin layer of oil.

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat until hot. Spread the beef slices in the skillet in a single layer. Cook until the bottom side of the beef turns golden brown, about 1 minute. Flip the beef and cook the other side until browned, but the inside is still a bit pink, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Transfer beef to a plate immediately.

In the same skillet, add the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil and turn to medium heat. Add garlic, ginger, and onion. Stir constantly until you can smell a strong fragrance, 15 seconds.
Toss the cooked noodles again and add them into the skillet. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil onto the noodles. Use a pair of tongs to toss the noodles with oil. If the noodles start to get sticky, swirl in 2 tablespoons water.

Add the beef back into the skillet. Pour in the mixed sauce. Immediately use a pair of tongs to toss and mix everything.
Add the onion and green onion. Toss a few more times, until the sauce is absorbed by the noodles.

Add bean sprouts and cooked broccolini back into the skillet, swirl in the sesame oil (if using), and give it a final toss. Turn off heat and transfer everything to serving plates immediately.

Serve hot as a main.

NOTES

You can use regular soy sauce to replace all the light / dark soy sauce in this recipe. Note that the dish will come out with a lighter color if you do so.

Sichuan Chicken in Chili Oil (Kou Shui Ji)

3 tablespoon plain roasted peanuts, finely chopped
1 tablespoon roasted sesame seeds
1 tablespoon red chili flakes or dried red chilis, seeded and chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 a 1/2 cup oil
3 scallions, cut into large sections
4 slices ginger
5 cloves garlic, sliced
1 star anise
1 small cinnamon stick
1 1/2 tablespoons Sichuan peppercorns

For Step 2:
2 chicken leg quarters, deboned with skin still on (try asking your butcher to do this for you)
2 scallions
2 slices ginger

For Step 3:
1 tablespoon sesame paste
2 tablespoons light soy sauce
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
1/2 tablespoon sugar
3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tablespoons chicken stock

Put chopped peanuts, roasted sesame seeds, red pepper flakes and salt into a medium bowl and set it aside.

Heat your oil in pan over low heat, and add the scallions, ginger, garlic, star anise, cinnamon stick, and Sichuan peppercorns. Allow these aromatics to slowly infuse into the oil, until everything is kind of browned and wrinkly and fragrant. Discard the spices and pour the hot infused oil into the peanut mixture. Give everything a stir and cover the bowl with a plate to seal everything inside. Walk away and don’t come back until everything else is ready!

Bring a medium pot of water to a boil (there should be enough water to submerge the chicken) along with the ginger and scallion. Once it’s boiling, add the chicken (once it’s added the water will probably stop boiling because of the temperature change).

Bring the water to a boil again, and after a minute, cover the pot and immediately turn off the heat. Let it sit on the stove for 20 minutes to slowly poach the chicken.

In the meantime, prepare a small ice bath for chicken. After 20 minutes, take the chicken out of the pot and plunge it in the ice bath and let the chicken cool completely. Slice the chicken and place it on your serving plate.

Mix all of the Step 3 ingredients in a bowl. Now combine the mixture you just made with the peanut mixture you made in Step

Pour as much as you want over the chicken. Use about two thirds and save the rest for a cold noodle lunch the next day (a highly recommended action!).

Sichuan Chili Oil

1 1/2 cups oil (ideally a vegetable, peanut, or grapeseed oil)
5 star anise
1 cinnamon stick, preferably cassia cinnamon
2 bay leaves
3 tablespoons Sichuan peppercorns
3/4 cup Asian crushed red pepper flakes (Sichuan chili flakes are the best)
1 – 1½ teaspoons salt (to taste)

Heat the oil, star anise, cinnamon stick, bay leaves, and Sichuan peppercorns in a small saucepan over medium high heat. When the oil starts to bubble slightly, turn the heat down to medium.

Let the oil cook for 30 minutes like this. If you start to see that slight bubbling die down, periodically turn the heat back up to medium-high, then back down to medium if it gets too hot.
When the oil is done cooking, the seeds and pods should be darker in color, but not blackened (that means they burned, which results in subpar chili oil). Let the oil cool for 5 minutes. In a separate heat-proof bowl, measure out the crushed red pepper flakes and salt.

Remove the aromatics from the oil using a fine mesh strainer. Slowly pour the oil over the chili flakes, and stir well. When completely cooled, transfer to a jar, and store in the refrigerator. The oil will keep for up to 6 months when stored this way (always remember to use a clean spoon to dip into the jar!)

Baked Gobi Manchurian

4 cups chopped cauliflower
1 cup chopped onions
1 large bell pepper chopped or eight small little ones
2 tablespoons oil
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon turmeric

For the sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce
3 tablespoons ketchup
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon minced ginger
1 teaspoon Sriracha or other hot sauce

Line a sheet pan with foil and turn on your broiler.

Sprinkle the veggies with oil, salt, and turmeric.

Mix well and place veggies on foil-lined sheet.

Broil for 30 minutes or so until the veggies are cooked.

Meanwhile, in a microwave safe bowl, mix together all the sauce ingredients and microwave for 30 seconds. Let this sit while the veggies cook.

When the veggies are done, remove from the oven and pour sauce on them, mixing as you go.

Stir Fry Sauce

1/2 cup low-sodium soy sauce
1/2 cup no-salt-added vegetable broth
1 tablespoon honey or agave nectar
1 teaspoon vinegar
2 teaspoons ground ginger
2 cloves garlic, minced

Combine the soy sauce, broth, honey or agave nectar, vinegar, ginger and garlic in a mason jar. Seal and shake well, until incorporated. Use right away, or refrigerate for up to 4 weeks.

This is a great sauce to have in your repertoire when you need to pull together a fast meal out of whatever’s in the refrigerator. Toss it with leftover rice or noodles, vegetables and any kind of protein for an impromptu dish of fried rice or lo mein, or use it as a marinade for chicken, beef or tofu.

Add a squirt of lime juice and Sriracha to give it a Thai-inspired flavor, or substitute it for that packet of dried seasoning the next time you mix up a late-night bowl of ramen.

Ginger Scallion Hokkien Noodles

8 oz. boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into thin strips
1 teaspoon cornstarch
Vegetable oil Coupons
1 teaspoon soy sauce, plus 1½ tablespoons (divided)
6 slices ginger
8 scallions, julienned
1 red chili, sliced (optional)
1 pound (cooked) hokkien noodles or fresh lo mein noodles
2 tablespoons Shaoxing wine (can substitute another other rice wine or dry sherry)
2 teaspoons dark soy sauce (mostly for color)

Combine the chicken with 1 teaspoon cornstarch, 1 teaspoon oil and 1 teaspoon soy sauce.

Heat a wok over high heat until smoking. Add 2 tablespoons of oil, and stir-fry the chicken until it turns opaque. Remove from the wok and set aside.

Add 2 more tablespoons of oil to the wok, and add the ginger slices. Fry for 1 minute, and add the scallions and red chili.
Add the noodles, and stir-fry, adding a sprinkling of hot water if the noodles are cold and you’re having difficulty breaking them up.
When the noodles have loosened and warmed up, add the Shaoxing wine, 1½ tablespoons light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, and cooked chicken. Stir-fry until combined––about 1-2 minutes. Serve!

Black Bean Tofu

1 box firm tofu, about 15 ounces
3 tablespoons oil, divided Coupons
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tablespoons dried fermented black beans, rinsed
2 scallions, cut into large pieces, whites and greens separated
A few dried (or fresh) red chilies, deseeded and chopped (optional)
1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine
1/2 tablespoon light soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon cornstarch, dissolved in 2 tablespoons water

Cut the tofu into 1/4-inch thick squares. Pat each piece of tofu dry with a paper towel, and set aside.

Place a clean wok or cast iron skillet over high heat until it just starts to smoke. This is an important step to prevent the tofu from sticking. Turn the heat down to medium, and add 2 tablespoons of oil to coat your pan. Pan-fry the tofu on both sides until lightly golden brown. Turn off the heat, and transfer the tofu to a plate.

Over medium heat, and add 1 tablespoon of oil to your wok, along with the garlic, black beans, the white parts of the scallions, and the chopped chilies. Depending on how hot your chilies are, as well as your own tolerance for spice, you may want to use more or fewer chilies––or none at all. I used 7 dried chilies, de-seeded.

Stir and cook everything for a minute, taking care not to burn the garlic. Add in the tofu, the Shaoxing wine, light soy sauce, sesame oil, white pepper, sugar, and the green parts of the scallions.

Stir-fry gently so as to not break up the tofu. When the mixture is bubbling, stir your cornstarch mixture to ensure that the cornstarch is completely dissolved.

Then add it to the wok, stirring gently and quickly until the sauce has thickened and evenly coats the tofu. Serve immediately!

Quick Sesame Noodles (Single Serving)

4 oz. fresh wheat noodles (or 1 serving of dried noodles)
1/2 tablespoon sesame paste / tahini
1 tablespoon peanut butter
1 tablespoon light soy sauce
1-2 teaspoons rice vinegar (optional to taste)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon sugar
5 tablespoons hot water (or braised meat sauce)
A small handful of chopped scallion
Chili oil (optional)

Cook the noodles according to the package instructions.

While the noodles are cooking, make the sauce by mixing together the sesame paste, peanut butter, light soy sauce, rice vinegar (optional), vegetable oil, sugar, and water. Stir in one direction until it turns into a smooth, even paste.

Once the noodles are cooked, drain them and toss with the prepared sauce, chopped scallions, and chili oil (if desired).

Braised Eggplant with Minced Pork

1 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
2 pounds eggplant, cubed
8 ounces ground pork
2 teaspoons Shaoxing wine
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
2 teaspoons, plus 1 tablespoon light soy sauce (divided)
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
10 ounces dried spaghetti or noodles
1 tablespoon, plus 3 tablespoons oil (divided)
1/2 green bell pepper, diced
1 tablespoon minced ginger
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 red chili, chopped
2 tablespoons ground bean sauce
1 teaspoon dark soy sauce
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1/4 cup chopped cilantro (optional)

Dissolve 1 teaspoon of salt into 8 cups of water in a large bowl. Soak the cubed eggplant in the salt water for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, drain the eggplant, and use your hands or a clean dish towel to squeeze the water out of it. Set aside. This step helps the eggplant cook faster and absorb less oil later on.

In a separate bowl, mix the ground pork with 2 teaspoons Shaoxing wine, 1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper, 2 teaspoons light soy sauce, 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil, 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch, and 2 teaspoons water. Marinate for 15-20 minutes.
Next, cook the spaghetti (or noodles) according to the package instructions. Drain, and set aside.

Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a clean wok over medium heat, and cook the bell pepper for about a minute. Transfer the peppers to a dish, and set aside.

Next, heat 3 tablespoons of oil in the wok over low heat. Cook the ginger and garlic for about a minute. Add the chili, and cook for another minute. Add the ground bean sauce, and cook for another minute. Then add the pork, and turn up the heat. When the pork is browned, add the eggplant, and stir-fry everything together thoroughly.

Cook for a couple of minutes before adding 1 tablespoon light soy sauce, 1 teaspoon dark soy sauce, 1 tablespoon oyster sauce, and 2 cups water. Mix everything together well, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes over medium heat, or until the eggplant is tender. At this point in the cooking process, there should be plenty of sauce in the wok. The starch from the spaghetti or noodles will help thicken it.

Lastly, add the bell pepper, cooked noodles, and chopped cilantro to the wok (if using). Mix everything well, add salt to taste, and serve immediately!

Cantonese Supreme Soy Sauce Pan-Fried Noodles

1 1/2 cups bean sprouts
2 scallions
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon dark soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1/2 tablespoon shaoxing wine
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
8 ozs fresh thin Hong Kong Style Egg Noodles (like they have at Wegman’s, for pan-frying, not to be mistaken for wonton noodles)
3 tablespoons oil

Bring 2 quarts of water to a boil. Rinse the bean sprouts in cold water and drain.

Julienne the scallions.

Mix the soy sauces, sesame oil, salt, sugar, wine and white pepper into a small bowl and set aside.

Boil the noodles. Fresh noodles should be boiled for about 1 minute.

Heat the wok to high and add a tablespoon of oil to coat the wok. Spread the noodles in a thin, even layer on the wok and tilt the wok in a circular motion to distribute the oil and crisp the bottom layer of the noodles evenly. It should take about 3-5 minutes for the first side.

Flip the noodles over and add another tablespoon of oil around the perimeter of the wok and let the other side crisp up. Don’t stress if you can’t turn the noodles over in one shot, The goal here is just to get an even, light crispiness and to dry out the noodles during this cooking stage. In our pictures for this post, we used a large non-stick pan, which also works nicely.

Set aside these noodles on a plate.

Heat the wok over high heat. Add a tablespoon of oil and all of the white parts of the scallion to the pan and cook for about 15 seconds. Next, add the noodles to the wok and toss them well, breaking up the noodles so they’re not all in one big clump. Add the soy sauce mixture and toss continuously (don’t stop!) for a couple minutes using a pair of chopsticks or a set of tongs. Keep the heat on high.

After the noodles are uniformly golden brown, add the bean sprouts and toss. Add the rest of the scallions and toss the mixture again for another 1 to 2 minutes until you see the bean sprouts just starting to turn transparent. You want the sprouts to be cooked but still crunchy. Be careful not to overcook them or they will become limp and soggy. High heat is a key
requirement for this dish.

Plate and serve!

Pan-fried Noodles

1 package Hong Kong Style Pan-Fried Noodles (the kind they have at Wegman’s)
Soy sauce
Sesame oil
Lao Gan Ma spicy black bean sauce
Vegetable oil, for cooking

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Drop in the noodles and boil for one minute. Drain.

Heat a couple tablespoons of vegetable oil in a non-stick pan over medium-high heat. Take about a quarter of the noodles and spread them evenly in the pan.

Let them cook until golden brown on both sides. Slide onto a serving plate and toss with about two teaspoons of soy sauce, a teaspoon of sesame oil, and some hot sauce.

Supreme Soy Sauce

2 teaspoons fish sauce
2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
2 tablespoons light soy sauce
2 teaspoons Shaoxing wine
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon vegetable or canola oil
1 teaspoon oyster sauce

Put everything in a small saucepan over medium heat.

Stir to dissolve the sugar. Once the sauce starts to boil, turn off the heat, and it’s done.

Let it cool completely before storing it in an air-tight container.

Banquet Fried Rice

3 cups cooked rice
Oil
2 eggs, beaten
handful of chopped carrot
handful of chopped onion
handful of chopped ham
1/2 cup frozen peas
salt and white pepper
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1 scallion, chopped

Heat a splash of oil in your wok over medium high heat.

Scramble your eggs and set aside.

Add a bit more oil to the pan and cook your onions and carrots for about 2 minutes, or until slightly soft.

Add your ham and stir-fry for an additional 2 minutes.

Add peas and rice. Stir-fry to warm everything through.

Season with salt, white pepper, and soy sauce. Stir in scallions.

Continue to stir fry for another 3 minutes. Serve!

Egg Fried Rice

5 cups cooked rice
5 large eggs (divided)
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
3 tablespoons oil (divided)
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1/2 red bell pepper, finely chopped
1/2 cup frozen peas, thawed
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 scallions, chopped

Use a fork to fluff up the rice and break it apart. If you’re using freshly cooked rice, let it stand on the counter uncovered until it stops steaming before fluffing it. If you decide to refrigerate the rice overnight in advance of preparing this recipe, it will clump up; you can then use your hands to break up the cold rice clumps into individual grains.

Beat 3 eggs in one bowl. Beat the other 2 eggs in another bowl, along with 2 tablespoons water, the paprika, and the turmeric. Set these two bowls aside.

Heat a wok over medium high heat, and add 2 tablespoons oil. Add the 3 beaten eggs (without the spices), and scramble them. Remove them from the wok and set aside.

Heat wok over high heat, and add the last tablespoon oil. Add the diced onion and bell pepper. Stir-fry for 1-2 minutes.

Next, add the rice and stir-fry for 2 minutes, using a scooping motion to heat the rice uniformly. Use your wok spatula to flatten out and break up any rice clumps.

Next, pour the uncooked egg and spice mixture over the rice, and stir-fry for about 1 minute, until all of the rice grains are coated in egg.

Add the peas and stir fry continuously for another minute. Next spread the salt, sugar, and black pepper over the rice and mix. You should now see some steam coming off the rice, which means it is heated through.

If the rice looks a little dry, feel free to sprinkle in some water or chicken stock. Adding some liquid directly to any remaining clumps of rice will also help to break them up. Mix in the scrambled eggs and scallions and serve!

Supreme Soy Sauce Fried Rice

For the soy sauce mixture:
2 teaspoons fish sauce
2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
2 tablespoons light soy sauce
2 teaspoons Shaoxing wine
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon vegetable or canola oil
1 teaspoon oyster sauce

For the fried rice:
3 eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon Shaoxing wine
Salt, to taste
3 tablespoons oil, divided
6 cups of cooked rice, cooled
Your Soy Sauce mixture (see above)
3 scallions, finely chopped

First, make the soy sauce mixture. Put all the sauce ingredients in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir to dissolve the sugar.

Once the sauce starts to boil, turn off the heat, and it’s done. It’s ready to use for the fried rice, or you can let it cool completely before storing it in an air-tight container. To clarify, the amount of sauce here is just enough for this recipe. If you’re making more, double or triple, as needed.

To your beaten eggs, add 1 teaspoon Shaoxing wine and a pinch of salt. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in your wok over high heat. Quickly scramble the eggs, and transfer to a dish. Set aside.

Now turn the heat down to medium, and add 2 tablespoons of oil to the wok. Add the rice, stir for a couple of minutes to make sure the rice is heated through.

Now add the soy sauce mixture and the scrambled egg. Stir fry everything until combined. Pause for a taste test to see if additional salt is necessary. Lastly, toss in the chopped scallion, stir fry to combine, and serve!

Chendu-Style Sichuan Fried Rice

5 ounces Jinhua ham or any standard Asian salt cured ham
5 tablespoons oil
1 packet of suimi ya cai (2.8 oz./80g)
6 scallions, chopped
7 cups cooked jasmine rice
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine
4 eggs, beaten

Place the jinhua ham in a heatproof bowl or plate. Heat up your choice of steaming device (e.g., an actual steamer pot, a wok with water and a metal rack, etc.), and steam the ham for 15 minutes.

Remove from the steamer and cool. Chop up the ham and then mince it finely.

Next, heat 5 tablespoons of oil in the the wok over high heat. Add the ham and stir fry until it’s lightly crisped at the edges. Add the suimi ya cai and stir fry for 2 minutes until fragrant. Add the scallions and stir-fry until the scallions get lightly blistered.

Add the rice to the wok and stir fry to distribute the ingredients evenly. Spread the rice out in one layer and let “fry” for 2 minutes. Add the white pepper and Shaoxing wine. Stir the rice to combine.

Spread out again and let the rice fry for another 2 minutes. Stir to combine, and spread it out and let it fry again. Next, drizzle the beaten eggs over the rice. Stir fry the rice, allowing the egg to cook and distribute throughout. Serve!

Ideas for Egg Lunches: Yunnanese Chili Paste

1 cup Thai dried red chiles
1 cup boiling water
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons peanut oil
1/2 teaspoons cumin seeds, roughly crushed in a mortar
1/3 cup minced shallots
1 1/2 teaspoons black rice vinegar, or substitute cider vinegar

Rinse the chiles and place them in a medium bowl. Pour the boiling water over and stir to wet all the chiles. Place a lid or small plate just slightly smaller than the diameter of the bowl on the chiles to keep them immersed. Let soak for at least 20 minutes or as long as 2 hours.

Transfer the chiles and soaking water to a food processor or blender and puree. Add the salt and sugar and process briefly to blend. Transfer back to the bowl and set aside.

Place a wok or heavy skillet over medium-high heat. When it is hot, add the oil and swirl it around, then add the crushed cumin seeds and cook about 30 seconds, stirring to prevent scorching. Toss in the shallots and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until softened and translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the pureed chile mixture (be careful of spattering as it hits the hot pan) and bring to a boil, then cook, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes, until the sauce thickens slightly. Remove from the heat and stir in the vinegar.

Transfer to a clean bowl to cool, then store in a sterile, well-sealed glass container in the refrigerator.

Ideas for Egg Lunches: Odd Flavor Sauce

Makes about 1/2 cup

3 T soy sauce
2 T tahini or almond or peanut butter
1 T Chinkiang vinegar (preferable!) or red-wine vinegar
1 T sesame oil
2 t sugar
1/4 t kosher salt
3 T neutral oil
1 small scallion, finely chopped (about 1 T)
1 T minced fresh ginger
1 large garlic clove, finely chopped (about 1 t)
1/2 t chili flakes (or more to taste)
1/2 t crushed Sichuan peppercorns

Combine the soy sauce, tahini, vinegar, sesame oil, sugar, and salt in a small heatproof bowl and mix until the sugar is dissolved and the tahini is well incorporated. (It might not be perfectly dissolved. That’s okay.)

In a small skillet over medium heat, add the neutral oil, swirl, and heat until shimmering. Toss in the scallion, ginger, garlic, chili flakes, and crushed peppercorns. Remove from the heat and stir for 10 seconds, until the scallion is bright green and the mixture is very aromatic. Pour the contents of the pan into the liquid seasonings, whisking until well blended. Once cool, this sauce will keep in the fridge for a day or two.

Good with any warm white proteins—your chicken, fish, pork, and tofu—and can generally bring life to any bland food straight out of the fridge. Salt-and-pepper one of those proteins and heat through until it’s cooked (in a pan, in the toaster oven, whatever), slice it up, douse it in the Odd Flavor, and (with a little rice) dinner is done.

Ideas for Egg Lunches: Chili Oil and Scallions

(Adapted for hard boiled eggs)

4 scallions, whites and greens separated, thinly sliced
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 teaspoons sesame seeds
2 teaspoons Sichuan pepper, coarsely chopped
Kosher salt
1/4 cup tahini
1/4 cup unseasoned rice vinegar
3 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
1 teaspoon sugar

Hard boiled eggs, for serving

Cook scallion whites, vegetable oil, red pepper flakes, sesame seeds, and pepper in a small saucepan over low heat, stirring occasionally, until oil is sizzling and scallions are golden brown, 12–15 minutes; let chili oil cool in saucepan.

Whisk tahini, vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, sugar, and 2–3 tablespoons chili oil (depending on desired heat) in a large bowl; season with salt.

Top with scallion greens and drizzle with more chili oil.

Ideas for Egg Lunches: Eggs in Chinese Tomato Sauce

(Adapted for hard boiled eggs)

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
Pinch of salt
3 scallions, chopped finely, green and white pieces
separated
2 large tomatoes or 3 plum or Roma tomatoes, chopped into 3/4-inch pieces
2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon sugar
Dash of rice wine
Dash of toasted sesame oil
1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch

Hard boiled eggs, for serving

Heat vegetable oil. Once it is hot, add the white scallion pieces and salt. Stir fry for 1 minute and then add the tomatoes, the rest of the scallions, vinegar, and sugar. Cook for another 2 minutes until very fragrant. Add the rice wine and sesame oil to taste.

In a small bowl, mix the cornstarch with 1 tablespoon water. Add to the tomato mixture, stirring until the sauce is thickened. Taste and add more salt, if needed.

Personalization:
Add herbs (cilantro, even basil or Thai basil) and sesame seeds.
Use onion or spring onion in place of the scallions.
Wilt greens like kale or mizuna or spinach and fold in at the end, right before you add the eggs.