[MUSIC PLAYING] BETH MCKINNEY: Welcome, everyone to Three Easy Dinners, which as you can see from your recipes is four easy dinners. I snuck an extra one in. My name is Beth McKinney from Cornell Wellness. And we're going to have some fun here in the kitchen and attempt to do it within the hour.
Has anybody ever cooked with this before? So I brought these in Wegman's. They're on an endcap.
These are cooked noodles. This is 16 ounces. So it's a pound of noodles. And actually, I had these last night for dinner.
It's just really fun and different. You can make spaghetti and do the same thing. These are a little bit different in the way they unstick to each other. But essentially, we're going to add a little water and put them in the microwave for two minutes and add them to my stir fry at the end.
And then, we're going to make a nifty sauce. And as I said already, these are suggestions for recipes. You can do anything you want to this recipe. But it just happens in either a frying pan or a wok.
It makes a lot of food, although I will tell you that last night I did this with a pound of tofu and all these noodles. And three adults polished off the whole thing. So it's either it was really good or they were really hungry.
OK. So, Ruth, can you add a little spritz of water. And it just will loosen them up. We're going to microwave it for two minutes.
SPEAKER 1: Are those wheat? Or do they have some [INAUDIBLE]?
BETH MCKINNEY: These are wheat noodles. But you can make this dish with rice noodles. You can make this dish with soba noodles.
Soba noodles are buckwheat, just as an FYI. But a lot of soba noodles are made with a combination of wheat and buckwheat. And so they're not gluten free.
You can buy gluten free soba noodles. But you have to make sure that you see. So this is our beef dish for today.
And so what I was hoping to do for you is a vegetarian dish, a fish dish, and a meat dish. That's how I build it. So as you heard, you don't need to put meat in it.
But this is a nice way if you are trying to cut down on meat-- where is my meat? Here it is. If you are trying to cut down on meat, one small amount of meat-- and this is like half a pound of sliced beef. I put a little salt and pepper on it. That's going to serve all of us.
And so it could meet your specific needs if that's what you're trying to do. But once again, you can put anything you want in this. Right. So we've got today mushrooms. We've got red pepper.
If you like a different kind of pepper, we've got some carrots. We're going to put some spinach in. This is a tinsy little bit-- is that a word, "tinsy?" It's a small amount of snow peas. It is snow peas. Yep.
And so we're going to do a standard stir fry. The way that you do a stir fry is you must line up all your ingredients before they go in the pan. Because what you're going to be doing is working with a very hot wok. And things are going to cook fast.
And so if you look at the recipe, essentially you have to start by making the sauce. So what we're going to do is make a sauce for these lo mein noodles. You can google any sauce you want. But this one I've made three times already. And it's a winning sauce.
OK. And so do you have to measure? You do not have to measure. But we will measure 2 tablespoons of soy, 2 teaspoons of sugar, pre-measured, 1 teaspoon of sesame oil. There's pretty much no substitute for sesame oil. It is very flavorful.
SPEAKER 2: If I had--
BETH MCKINNEY: Thank you.
SPEAKER 2: --tahini in the fridge could I? No.
BETH MCKINNEY: Tahini will not substitute for sesame oil. You'll wind up-- it will taste a little bit like hummus. Sadly, last night I made this. And I didn't have sesame oil. And I had the very same thought.
And I thought, I don't think that's going to work. OK. Half a teaspoon of ginger. So this is saying ground ginger or that ginger paste that comes out like toothpaste.
I like using the real thing. So I am quickly going to cut up some ginger. Can everybody see this?
[? SPEAKER 1: Mm-hmm. ?]
BETH MCKINNEY: OK. OK. We stack up all these babies. With the grain. OK. And the Sriracha, this is one of these very spicy sauces that once you buy Sriracha, you might never use it up.
And I am going to put in less than what the recipe calls for. OK. So oh, it says half a teaspoon. I think I'll do half a teaspoon. That will be fine.
It's a spicy pepper sauce. And half a teaspoon will do it. What we're going for here is a hint of spiciness in your lo mein but not overwhelming.
OK. The other thing that goes in here is a little bit of water. And so, yes, I could measure a half a cup. Or not. And you know what, if it doesn't seem saucy enough for you, you might add a little bit more of any of the ingredients.
But that's going to be our sauce. And because I did this last night, I know it's going to be delightful. OK. So I am going to start getting this heated up. And I'm going to line everything up.
OK. We're going to start with garlic, which I haven't cut yet, then the mushrooms, pepper, carrot. OK. So here's what's going to happen. When the garlic goes in, I'm not going to let it cook too much because I don't want it to burn.
That was awkward. But it worked. OK.
There we go. I'm going to cook the vegetables. And then, I'm going to remove the vegetables. And then, I'm going to cook the meat.
Often when you're doing this kind of cooking, you can't stir fry all of your food at once. You have to cook some, remove it, cook some, and remove it. And then at the end, add it all back in. So that's what's going to happen here.
And I need some oil. You'll notice that I have not measured any oil. I try to use just enough, not too much.
When you're stir frying, oil is essential. Otherwise, you're steaming. Or you're doing something else, which is perfectly fine. But today, we are stir frying.
OK. So add my spinach. In my mind, it's lined up. OK. And the idea is to keep it moving. This is an electric stove with a flat bottom wok. And I have to say, it works.
OK. Next, they want the mushrooms. Is that right? OK. Next, they want-- actually, everything's going in. With this kind of recipe, when you see the instructions written a certain way and it's not baking, you can usually do whatever you want.
For example, earlier today when it was time to cut up the mushrooms, my colleague Debbie said, do you want me to gently wipe the mushrooms? Because as you know from watching TV, you gently wipe the mushrooms. And I said, nah, just rinse them in water.
So when you're at home, you can do whatever you want. And chances are, it is going to work.
Snow peas are going in. OK. We're going to [INAUDIBLE] this. If you did not put enough oil into your stir fry, you can always add more. And I think I'm seeing that this needs a little bit more oil. Ideally, what you should do is pour it down the outside because it will heat up from the pan before it gets to the food.
OK. How many people can see themselves doing this at home?
BETH MCKINNEY: OK. So what you do is when it's lo mein night, you buy-- make sure you have this. I've had mine in the refrigerator for a week. Have this. Get all your leftover vegetables or whatever vegetables you're planning on, whatever you like. Last night, I used broccoli, onion, carrot, celery.
SPEAKER 3: Can you add your spinach to that?
BETH MCKINNEY: That's going to go in at the end because it's just going to wilt. Or does it say--
BETH MCKINNEY: [HUMMING] Thank you, audience. OK. How much spinach does it say to add?
SPEAKER 4: Six ounces.
BETH MCKINNEY: All right. This is a bag full. It had 9 ounces. Half of the spinach is going here. Half of the spinach is going there.
But I will tell you that if I pile it all up, it's going to wilt. It could actually all go in. But now I'm doing a little bit of multitasking. Yep. Can you mix that in with--
BETH MCKINNEY: --a wooden spoon? And there's even a little bit more spinach. OK.
SPEAKER 5: Why a wooden spoon?
BETH MCKINNEY: That's my preference. You can use any spoon that you want. OK.
This is a beef. You could use only beef you like. Might as well use the least expensive cut. Sliced thin, salt and pepper.
And essentially, I just want to make sure the meat is cooked. It's going to cook a little bit more.
BETH MCKINNEY: The noodles are going in.
The vegetables are going in. Spinach is going in. And all of this is optional. And then, here's the key that I discovered when I made this last night, to mix it, you might need to use tongs.
That's the only piece of advice I would give you. And if I knew where the tongs were, I'd switch over. I will find the tongs.
But in any case, this gets all mixed together. If you wanted to use honey instead of sugar, absolutely. OK. There's the sauce. And in a moment once it starts getting mixed together, it too will be done.
I still have it on high. But the noodles are already cooked. That's the beauty of this. OK.
The hardest part, to be quite honest, is making sure you have all the foods in your house. And so I know that we're going to be right up on the edge of our time. Everyone will have a chance to taste everything.
Ruth is putting together little tasting cups. And you just grab the plate and taste. But keep in mind that in this one hour, we have made four dinners. So I'd say, yeah, that was pretty good, pretty good.
But this is now done. And we get this plated up. And on that note, does anyone have any questions at all? Well, thank you very much.
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Learn how to use pre-cooked lo mein noodles for an inexpensive, quick, and tasty meal. Demo presented by Cornell Wellness staff Beth McKinney, RDN.