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Jap Chae: Korean Glass Noodles “You will become addicted,” one of my Korean friends said while warning me about watching Korean soap operas. Addiction is an understatement. As a result of these soap operas, I find myself immersing in Korean culture to the point where I listen to Korean music (the lyrics of which I don’t completely understand), recognize aspects of Korean culture, and experiment with flavors and textures of Korean cuisine. One of my family’s favorite Korean noodle dishes is Jap Chae; it’s made from gluten-free sweet potato noodles and fresh vegetables. It’s delicious or, as they say in Korea, Mah Sit Sso Yo!

Jap Chae: Korean Glass Noodles
Steamy Kitchen

INGREDIENTS
1/2 pound dried Korean sweet potato noodles
2½ teaspoons sesame oil, divided
1 tablespoon cooking oil
3/4 cup thinly sliced onions
2 carrots, cut into matchsticks
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
3 stalks green onions, cut into 1″ lengths
1/2 cup mushrooms, thinly sliced (shitake or wood ear)
1/2 lb spinach, washed well and drained
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons sugar
1 tablespoon sesame seeds

DIRECTIONS
1. Fill a large pot with water and boil. When water is boiling, add the noodles and cook for 5 minutes. Immediately drain and rinse with cold water. Drain again and toss with only 1 tsp of the sesame oil. Use kitchen shears to cut noodles into shorter pieces, about 8 inches in length. Set aside.

2. In bowl, mix soy sauce and sugar together. Set aside.

3. Add the cooking oil in a wok or large saute pan on high heat and swirl to coat. When the cooking oil is hot, but not smoking, fry onions and carrots, until just softened, about 1 minute.

4. Add the garlic, green onions and mushrooms, fry 30 seconds. Then add the spinach, soy sauce, sugar and the noodles. Fry 2-3 minutes until the noodles are cooked through. Turn off heat, toss with sesame seeds and the remaining 1½ tsp of sesame oil.

Serves 4

LINNELL’S NOTES
1. Sweet potato vermicelli (dang myun), dried shitake mushrooms, and dried wood ears can be found in most Asian markets or can be ordered online.

2. If you are using dried shitake mushrooms or dried wood ears instead of fresh, they will need to be soaked in warm water for about 15 minutes to rehydrate them prior to using.

3. Sometimes when I feel lazy, I buy a bag of shredded carrots and a bag of prewashed baby spinach leaves at my local grocery store.

4. If you would like to add some beef to this dish, thin strips of beef can be partially stir fried in step 3 before adding the onions and carrots.

5. Thin slices of red bell peppers can also be added in step 4.

6. This noodle dish can be served at room temperature.

7. Because my family likes this dish, I always double the recipe.

Enjoy!

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