210ml/7½fl oz boiling water or hot vegetable stock
150g/5½oz dried pre-sliced shiitake mushrooms
150g/5½oz dried mung bean noodles (glass noodles)
2 tbsp rapeseed oil
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tbsp peeled and grated fresh ginger
1 red chilli, seeds removed, finely chopped
1 tbsp Shaoxing rice wine or dry sherry
200m/7fl oz hot vegetable stock
1 tsp sesame oil
2 large spring onions, trimmed and thinly sliced
For the seasoning
1 tbsp tamari
1 tbsp Japanese rice vinegar
1 tsp brown rice miso paste
For the deep fried leek
oil, for deep-frying
½ leek (top part only), shredded lengthways
2 pinches sea salt
2 pinches ground white pepper
3–4 pinches white caster sugar
2–3 tbsp potato flour
For the broccoli stir fry
1 head broccoli, broken into florets and then each floret sliced into 3 pieces
1 tbsp rapeseed oil
1 large pinch sea salt
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1cm/½in piece ginger, peeled and finely chopped
1 red chilli, finely chopped
2 tbsp Shaoxing rice wine or dry sherry
1 tsp goji berries
1 tbsp cold vegetable stock
1 tsp cornflour
To make the ants climbing trees, place the soya mince in a bowl and pour over the hot water or stock. Leave for 5 minutes to rehydrate (alternatively do this according to packet instructions).
Put the mushrooms in a bowl and cover with hot water. Leave to soak for 20 minutes, then drain and set aside.
Meanwhile, place the noodles in a large bowl and soak in hot water for 10 minutes. Drain and set aside until needed
To make the seasoning, mix together the tamari, Japanese rice vinegar and brown rice miso paste in a small bowl. Set aside.
To make the deep-fried leeks, heat the oil in a deep fat fryer to 150C (CAUTION: hot oil can be dangerous. Do not leave unattended.) Season the sliced leeks with half of the salt, ground white pepper and sugar, and coat in the potato flour.
Fry the leek in the hot oil until golden-brown. Carefully remove and drain on a plate lined with kitchen paper. Sprinkle over the remaining salt, pepper and sugar. Set aside.
To finish the ants climbing trees, heat a wok over a high heat until smoking, then add the rapeseed oil. Once hot, add the garlic, ginger and chilli and stir-fry for a few seconds, then add the rehydrated soya mince and mushrooms and stir-fry for 2–3 minutes, or until browned at the edges. Add the Shaoxing rice wine or sherry and the pre-made seasoning sauce. Add the drained noodles and stir well. Stir in the hot stock and bring to the boil (this helps to keep the dish moist).
To make the broccoli stir fry, heat a wok over high heat until smoking. Add the rapeseed oil. Add the pinch of salt to dissolve it in the oil. Add the garlic, ginger and chillies. Toss for a few seconds and add the broccoli. Toss, cooking for less than 1 minute. Add the Shaoxing rice wine and goji berries to soften.
When the broccoli is slightly deeper green, mix together the veg stock and cornflour in a separate bowl to make a ‘slurry’. Add the ‘slurry’, stir in and give it all one final toss.
Season the ants climbing trees with the sesame oil, add the spring onions, toss to combine and serve immediately topped with the deep-fried leek and the broccoli stir-fry on the side.
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