The girls are due home at around four o’clock this afternoon from a three-day community service field trip to the pawikan reserve in Morong, Bataan and I am whiling away the time productively — trying to, at least (what a slow and quiet day without the kids in the house) until Speedy and I have to leave for the school to pick them up. The girls left on Thursday evening and, as a result, Friday and Saturday were cooking for one days for me. I had this bowl of pork mami on Friday evening. All the talk about the Chinese New Year and the Year of the Pig may have entered my subconscious mind surreptitiously that I cooked two Chinese noodle dishes last Friday.
Mami is what we Filipinos call the traditional Chinese noodle soup with vegetables and meat or seafood. I have no idea who coined the term but I am pretty certain that the term mami is peculiar to the Philippines.
I boiled two chunks of pork spare ribs for the broth then deboned the very meaty ribs before assembling my noodle soup. I used the same noodles that went into the pancit canton that I had for lunch on the same day. Actually, my decision to prepare the noodles as a soup dish was a sort of experiment. See, I was very impressed with the texture of the noodles when I made the pancit canton and I was wondering whether they would retain their shape and texture if immersed in very hot broth when served. What do you know? I wasn’t disappointed at all.
Of course, you can use fresh egg noodles in lieu of the dried variety. But if you are in the Philippines, note that commercial fresh egg noodles are very, very salty. You will need to blanch them in boiling water for a few minutes to get rid of the excess salt.
This pork mami recipe is good for one.
You will need:
2-3 cups of meat broth (see an earlier entry on homemade broth)
about 60 grams (dry weight) of egg noodles
2-3 stalks of Chinese pechay (you can also use native pechay, pechay baguio, or bok choy, whichever is available)
1/2 carrot (peeled, sliced thinly or julienned, whichever size and shape you prefer)
cooked boneless pork, cut into 1/4-inch thick slices
1 tbsp. of finely sliced onion leaves
toasted garlic for garnish
Cook the egg noodles in boiling water until tender but not mushy. Arrange at the bottom of a deep soup bowl.
(Note that you may cook the egg noodles directly in the broth but if the noodles are starchy, your broth may turn cloudy and leave a starchy taste and flavor which may ruin your noodle soup dish.)
Heat the meat broth. Season with patis (seasoning with patis rather than salt gives the broth a light golden color). When the broth boils, add the pork slices, carrot and pechay and boil gently for a few minutes over medium heat.
Scoop out the meat and vegetables and arrange around the noodles in the bowl. Pour in the broth. Sprinkle the chopped onion leaves and toasted garlic on top.