I felt the Swiss chard was a good substitute for the spinach and would only take a small portion of the quantity I had. I’ve made a dish with glass noodles a long time ago, apparently neither my husband or I can remember when.
The recipe says it takes 30 minutes; however, I beg to differ. Practicing mise en place it took about that long just to clean and prepare the vegetables for the stir fry. However, once that is done, the dish goes very quickly as you’re frying and removing the vegetables. While I was doing that, I also cooked the noodles. The noodles are cooked, drained and rinsed under cold water to stop the cooking process. Several tablespoons of stir fry sauce is mixed afterwards with the noodles.
Onions and carrots, seasoned with salt and pepper, are stir fried with some oil. Next are the mushrooms and some stir fry sauce. If your noodles are done, the vegetables are mixed in. To finish the preparation, a little more oil is added to the pan and the sugar snap peas and asparagus are cooked, again seasoned with salt and pepper, until crisp tender. The spinach, or in my case Swiss chard, is added and cooked till wilted. As the Swiss chard is not as delicate as spinach, I covered the pan for cooking. Once done, these ingredients are tossed with the noodles along with the balance of the sauce. Adjust your salt and pepper seasoning. The noodles can be served warm or at room temperature and garnished with toasted sesame seeds.
By the time I sat down to dinner, my husband already had a taste of the glass noodles and was not a fan. He pushed the noodles aside and ate the vegetables. I liked the Japache, the flavor and the vegetable assortment made for a tasty, light supper. I bet if I served it over rice or vermicelli pasta , he would have gladly eaten it.
As a side note, I found while draining the noodles, they were slender enough to slip right through the holes of my colander! I had to quickly switch to a large mesh strainer to finish draining. Some of the comments by other cooks indicate you can add marinated beef to the dish or shrimp to the stir fry.
Currently, I have roasted golden beets from the CSA box, plenty of Swiss Chard, as well as lettuce remaining. I have a few recipes in the pipeline that can utilize these ingredients; so, stay tuned.
PS - My husband was still hungry, luckily there was some leftover pasta in the refrigerator.
Spring Vegetable Japchae (Korean Glass Noodles)
By Kay Chun
The New York Times, What to Make Next Week,”
May 20, 2023
Yield: 4 Servings
Time: 30 minutes
¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon turbinado sugar (or brown sugar)
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
Kosher salt and black pepper
12 ounces dried sweet potato noodles (glass noodles)
3 tablespoons safflower or canola oil
½ small yellow onion, thinly sliced (about ½ cup)
4 ounces carrots, peeled and cut into matchsticks (about 1 cup)
4 ounces fresh shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and thinly sliced (about 1½ cups)
1 medium yellow bell pepper, cored, seeded and sliced into ⅛-inch-thick strips
4 ounces sugar snap peas, thinly sliced lengthwise (about 1½ cups)
6ounces asparagus, trimmed and thinly sliced on a bias, tips kept whole (about 1 heaping cup)
4 ounces baby spinach (about 2 packed cups)
Toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
A former teacher, shop-a-holic, empty-nester redefining quick, family approved dinners.