This is an easy weeknight meal that only takes 30 minutes from start to finish. I used ramen noodles but you can use thin Chinese egg noodles, fresh or dried, or spaghetti. The crispy scallions add a piquant note to the salty-sweet sauce, dressed with fresh jalapeño pepper rounds and more scallions. I wanted more vegetables in the dish so I added the bean sprouts. You can also add stir-fried baby kale, shredded napa cabbage, carrot sticks, or celery or a combination.
Shanghai-Style Scallion Noodles with Ground Pork and Bean Sprouts (adapted from Milk Street)
200 grams dried ramen noodles (not instant)
4 tablespoons rice bran oil or any vegetable oil, divided
2-3 cups scallions (2 bunches), whites and greens separated
230 grams lean ground pork
2 teaspoons salted olives, chopped into a paste
1/3 cup mushroom soy sauce
3 tablespoons sugar
2 generous handfuls of fresh bean sprouts, roots trimmed
1-2 fresh jalapeño peppers, ends trimmed, sliced into thin rounds.
Fish sauce to taste
Trim roots and tips of scallions. Cut into 3 inch lengths and then slice vertically into slivers. Separate whites and greens.
Bring 4 liters water to a boil in a large saucepan. Add the noodles and cook until cooked through, about 3-4 minutes. Drain and rinse to cool. Drain again. Add 1 tablespoon oil to the noodles and toss. Set aside.
Mix together in a small bowl the soy sauce and the sugar. Set aside.
Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet or wok over medium heat until hot and shimmering. Add white parts of scallions and fry until almost brown and crisp, 4-7 minutes. Add half the green parts and continue frying until brown and crisp, 4-7 minutes. Remove from oil to a plate.
If there isn’t enough oil, add the remaining tablespoon of oil and heat over medium heat. When the oil is hot add the olive paste and stir it around. Add the pork and cook, stirring and breaking up large pieces until the pork is brown and crispy.
Add the soy sauce mixture to the pork and cook until it simmers. Add the bean sprouts and cook until just wilted, 1-2 minutes. Add the cooked noodles and crispy scallions, and toss to combine pork and vegetables. Taste and adjust seasoning. Add fish sauce if desired. Remove to a serving bowl. Sprinkle remaining scallions on top with the jalapeño rounds. Serve at once.