Last year’s Farmer’s Market at Taj Bengal was plenty of fun, and when I got an email from Karen Anand (yes, THE Karen Anand) asking me if I would like to have a special product to taste and make something with, I immediately said yes. I received two jars, subsequently: one of Harissa and the other one containing Black Pepper Sauce.
The Black Pepper Sauce has a decided pungency and a good hit from the pepper, but the overall effect is rather mellow. The products have no preservatives or additives, so once you open, put it in the fridge, and finish quickly. As I love everything peppery, I decided to make a batch of Chicken Mushroom Pepper Noodles with it, and sorry for the crappy photo – its because SOME PEOPLE could not wait for me to finish taking photos before they pounced on it.
Here’s what you do for a rather devastatingly simple recipe.
Cut one medium chicken breast into thin strips about an inch wide. Slice 200 gm. mushrooms. Heat 1 teaspoon vegetable or olive oil, and add 1 teaspoon chopped garlic. When the garlic is fragrant, add the mushrooms, and stir well over medium-high heat with a pinch of salt. You can also add carrots and other vegetables if you like – but I love mushrooms solo, so I refrained.
After about 1-2 minutes, add the chicken bits and stir that in well. Then, add 2.5 tablespoons of the black pepper sauce to the chicken mushroom mixture, along with 1 teaspoon soy sauce and a dash of tabasco/chilli sauce. Stir that in.
Meanwhile, in another vessel, cook about 150 gm. rice noodles in the amount of water instructed by the manufacturer. Generally, it takes about 2-3 minutes for rice noodles to cook. For plain noodles, use 200 gm. for 2-3 people. Salt the noodles generously. I prefer keeping mine slightly underdone, since I like mine finish cooking in the pan. If you are using regular noodles, it will take more time, so start cooking it accordingly. Ideally, the noodles and the chicken should finish cooking simultaneously.
Add about ½ cup of chicken stock (or water) to the chicken mixture, and cook till the chicken is cooked through and the sauce is nice and glossy. Add the noodles to the pan, and immediately stir everything to bring together the flavours. Let the noodles soak in some of the pan gravy to give it a lovely, peppery taste. Finish by adjusting salt, and you can even add a dash of honey if you like it slightly sweet!
Squeeze a wedge of lime on top, a few dashes of freshly crushed black pepper, and add some coriander leaves if you like to garnish, and you are done! If you like it vegetarian, simply don’t add the chicken, up the mushroom quotient by another 100 gm (introduce more varieties of mushrooms if you like), and switch chicken stock for vegetable stock or water.
If you want to check out Farmer’s Market (Round 2) by Karen Anand, you should head over to Taj Bengal on the 15th of November, 2015, between 11.00 pm to 7.00 pm. Come meet the different artisans and people at the place, and Karen is going to have a Burrata station, so come for the cheese!
Disclaimer: Product sent over by Karen Anand.