Chinese New Year: Pork and Sesame Noodle Cake

I was going to make spring rolls until I realised that I didn’t have any wrappers, so this noodle cake was made instead!

NoodleCake_1

Isn’t it funny how meals get created sometimes? At the point when I realised that I couldn’t make spring rolls I had already browned the pork mixture and was standing in my kitchen wondering what else I could do with it. I didn’t want to go down the route of a stir fry, mainly because my fridge didn’t really contain any decent vegetables except carrots… you wouldn’t think that I was in the supermarket only a few days ago.

Anyway, a quick flick through a recipe magazine provided inspiration to use eggs to combine the mince with the mixture of dried noodles that I did have. The magazine mentioned that eggs are popular for Chinese New Year because they symbolise fertility – not that I particularly need any of that, apart from in my vegetable patch 🙂

This is a dinner on its own for two, or serve it as part of a bigger Chinese feast for more people. Some sweet chilli sauce is a great accompaniment.

Ingredients – serves 2-6:

  • 500g/1 lb pork mince (ground)
  • 1/4 cup water chestnuts, finely diced
  • 1/4 small green cabbage, finely shredded
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons Chinese five spice
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoons sesame seeds
  • approx 80g/3 oz dried thin egg noodles
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • shredded carrot, optional, to serve

Method:

  • Heat your oven to 200C/180C fan forced/390F and grease a 23cm/9 inch spring-form pan. Place the spring-form pan on a baking tray.
  • Put the pork, water chestnuts, cabbage, soy sauce, five spice, sesame oil and 1 teaspoon of the sesame seeds into a medium bowl and use your clean hands to mix.
  • Spray a frying pan with a little cooking spray and then heat over a medium-high heat. Add the pork mixture and cook for a few minutes until just browned, stirring to break up any lumps. Once browned, put into a large bowl.
  • Soak the noodles in boiling water according to the packet directions. Once ready for use, drain the water and then put the noodles in the bowl with the pork mixture.
  • Toss the pork and noodles to mix, then pour in the beaten eggs and toss to coat everything.
  • Transfer to the prepared spring-form pan and level the surface. Use your hand to press down slightly on the top of the noodles.
  • Sprinkle over the remaining sesame seeds.
  • Cook for 18-20 minutes or until the eggs have just set and the noodles are turning golden. (Don’t be surprised if a little of the egg has leaked out of the pan – that is why you have put it onto a baking tray.)
  • Remove the pan from the oven and leave to cool for 10 minutes before turning out the noodle cake.
  • Serve topped with the shredded carrots, if using, and then cut into wedges.
  • Enjoy!

NoodleCake_2

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