March 31, 2011

pancit...a symbol of long life

Pancit is how we say noodles in the Philippines :-) It's the most common noodle dish that's well loved by everyone (I haven't met anyone who doesn't care for this). Vegetables play a major part in making pancit adding flavor and color to this festive dish. It's birthday time for me once again and as a symbol of long life, it's traditional in the Philippines to cook a certain noodle dish or spaghetti for one's birthday. Usually for a kid's birthday party, spaghetti has always been a sure hit. With the older crowd, it's pancit :-) The month of March was when I also started this foodblog exactly six years ago. The months and years go by so fast making me realize more how much we must all enjoy the time given us. With this celebration, I give thanks for the many blessings as well as for the gifts of family and joy in my life.

For my pancit recipe version...
1 package pancit canton or dried egg noodles
2-3 tablespoons minced garlic
1 small onion, sliced thinly
2-3 tablespoons oyster sauce
2-3 tablespoons soy sauce (optional ~ may be replaced with salt to taste)
additional chicken bouillon cubes if desired
1 1/2 cups chicken broth (vegetable broth or water may be used instead)
ground pepper
pan-fried tofu cubes
sliced green onions for garnish

For the vegetables, I used a combination of broccoli, cauliflower, red and yellow bell peppers, portabella mushrooms, edamame and sliced carrots.

To preserve the bright colors of the vegetables, I like to steam them and set them aside, ready to add to the noodles as a topping. For this version, I added pan fried tofu cubes instead of the usual chicken and pork making this pancit lighter and healthier. To make it 100% vegetarian, replace the chicken broth with vegetable broth or water. Steam the cut-up vegetables, keep warm and set aside. In a measuring cup, add the chicken broth, oyster sauce and soy sauce and pepper and mix well. In a wok, minced garlic and sliced onions were cooked in a small amount of oil. Pour in the seasoning sauce and simmer. Add the dried egg noodles or pancit canton. The noodles will soak up almost all of the sauce. It will continue to absorb the broth as it cools down. Add more water if needed. Transfer the noodles to a serving bowl or dish then top with the cooked vegetables. Garnish with sliced green onions.

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