• Christine Ha’s Stir-Fry Noodles with Seared Scallops


Simple Yet Stunning

By Christine Ha

Like a lot of Asian dishes, this one is all about prep. The actual cooking takes a matter of moments, but that’s only once everything is completely ready to go and lined up next to the wok. Overcooking rice vermicelli ruins it. The threadlike strands go from pliable noodles to soggy mush in a matter of seconds. It’s also crucial not to overcook the scallops. Heat the saute pan to blazing hot–don’t be afraid to turn up the heat to high. If you’re timid, the scallops will steam and not brown.

Christine Ha’s Stir-Fry Noodles with Seared Scallops


For the noodles:

  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon mirin
  • 1  1/2 teaspoons rice vinegar
  • 1  1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • 8 ounces dried rice vermicelli, soaked in cold water for 30 minutes
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 3 shallots, diced
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
  • 1 tablespoon peeled, finely chopped fresh ginger
  • 1 pound oyster mushrooms, halved if large
  • 2 carrots, peeled and julienned
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced

For the scallops:

  • 16 large sea scallops
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons chili oil
  • Sprigs fresh cilantro


Servings: 4

To make the noodles: Whisk the fish sauce, soy sauce, chicken stock, lime juice, mirin, vinegar, and sugar in a small bowl until the sugar dissolves. Set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Prepare a large bowl of ice water. Drain the soaking water from the vermicelli. Add the vermicelli to the boiling water and cook for just 10 seconds. Quickly drain the noodles, then place them in the ice water to cool completely. Drain well.

Heat a large heavy wok over medium-high heat. Add the canola oil, then stir in the shallots, garlic, and ginger. Cook until fragrant and the shallots begin to soften, about 1 minute. Add the mushrooms and carrots and stir-fry until they soften slightly, about 5 minutes. Stir in the vermicelli and the reserved sauce and stir-fry to coat, about 30 seconds. Stir in the scallions,

To make the scallops: Season the scallops with salt. Heat a large heavy saute pan over high heat. Add the canola and chili oils and swirl to coat the pan, then add the scallops and cook until dark brown, about 2 minutes per side.

To serve, divide the vermicelli among 4 wide bowls. Top with the scallops, garnish with the cilantro, and serve immediately.

Reprinted from MasterChef: The Ultimate Cookbook © 2012 by Reveille Independent, LLC. Permission granted by Rodale, Inc.

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