This is another recipe based upon Fuchsia Dunlop's Land of Plenty... However, I forget to write down the recipe before I returned the book. Looks like I'll have to cook this dish from memory (or I'll just update this post when I get a chance.) I'm glad I take lots of pictures to jog my memory.
Ants climbing a Tree is a weird name for a Chinese dish. I remember watching a film from the 70's where an actor was ordering food over the phone. One of the dishes he ordered was "Ants Climbing a Tree". I forgot the name of the film and the actor (vaguely remember Jack Klugman, but not sure), but I do remember the dish he ordered.
Who would eat ants? Who would eat a tree? What is so appealing about an ant climbing a tree?
I do know about ants and rubber tree plants. Well I have high hopes for this dish.
Ants Climbing a Tree (Approximate)
4 oz Vermicelli
Ground Meat (Chicken for this version)
1 t Chao Hsing Wine
1/2 t Dark Soy Sauce
(to taste) Light Soy Sauce
1 1/2 T Hot Bean Paste
2 C Stock
3 Green Onion, chopped
1. Soak the vermicelli noodles in water for about 15 minutes.
Marinade the ground meat with the wine and salt.
2. Fry the ground meat until partially cooked. Add the bean paste and stir in to mix and infuse flavors.
3. Add the stock and 1/2 t dark soy sauce.
Cover and simmer about 5 to 10 minutes.
Mix in the green onions before serving, reserve about 1 T per bowl as garnish.
4. Dish out into a serving bowl and garnish with more green onions.
The metaphorical ants (ground meat) climbing up a tree (the vermicelli noodles).
This is a straightforward dish that tasty too - slightly spicy, except for the chili bean paste, this is a familiar dish I've had growing up. I guess we've been eating "ants climbing a tree" without knowing it's "ants climbing a tree."
So far good recipes from Land of Plenty (LOP).