Sometimes I really want a takeaway dinner. It's so easy choosing from the menu and everything sounds so tempting. Ringing up, placing the order, hopping in the car and picking up the wonderful brown bag filled to the brim with foil containers. Coming home, and taking the lids off with waited anticipation! Ah yes, all so easy.
That's all a distant memory now and it's so much more fun making your own takeaway, with the added advantage that you can play around with the ingredients, depending what's in the house. I am definitely not an expert when it comes to stir frying, but you don't need to be to turn out something tasty.
The supermarkets are brimming with packs of stir fry vegetables, to which I tend to add mushrooms and onion, throw in some chicken if you like, buy a fresh stir fry sauce from Marks and Spencer, cook up some noodles and then add these to the stir fry - done!
Here is my homemade takeaway I made last Saturday evening, it definitely satisfied my craving for a sweet and sour Chinese meal.
COMPLETE FAMILY FOOD
ISBN 1844511804 - Page 120
You will need: 425g can pineapple pieces in natural juice or better still fresh pineapple, 1 deseeded green pepper deseeded and quartered (optional), 1 tablespoon groundnut oil, 1 onion cut into thin wedges, 3 tbsp soft brown sugar, 150ml chicken stock, 4 tbsp wine vinegar, 1 tbsp tomato puree, 1 tbsp light soy sauce, 1 tbsp cornflour, 350g fresh prawns, 225g pak choi shredded, 350g medium egg noodles, coriander leaves to garnish (optional).
1. Make the sauce by draining the pineapple and reserving 2 tablespoons of the juice.
2. If using a quartered pepper, remove the membrane and cut into thin strips.
3. Heat the oil in a saucepan. Add the onion and pepper and cook for about 4 minutes or until the onion has softened. Add the pineapple, the sugar, stock, vinegar, tomato puree and the soy sauce.
4. Bring the sauce to the boil and simmer for about 4 minutes. Blend the cornflour with the reserved pineapple juice and stir into the pan, stirring until thickened.
5. Clean the prawns if needed. Wash the pak choi thoroughly, then shred. Add the prawns and the pak choi to the sauce. Simmer gently for 3 minutes or until the prawns are cooked and have turned pink.
6.Cook the noodles in boiling water for 4-5 minutes until just tender. Drain and arrange the noodles on a warmed plate and pour over the sweet and sour prawns. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve immediately.