The thrill of a discovery of a discovery

You know many people do it, but you don't know how to do that. For some odd reason, you don't know whom to ask and what exactly to ask. Then by chance, you make the discovery and the thrill knows no bounds.
I have cooked noodles many times and had often wondered how they get the smoked smell in the fine dining restaurants. The noodles in such restaurants have a smoky flavour and I did not know if it was an ingredient that made it or the method of cooking. But that flavour is the reason their noodles taste so delicious.
Then I make the discovery of chilli oil. Just heat oil to 'really hot', drop a couple of red chillies in it and close with a lid to trap the smoke while immediately switching off the flame. Add this after it is cooled to the noodles. I just tried this without connecting the smoked flavour to this ingredient. But once the chilli oil is added, the whole flavour of the noodles changed to the 'restaurant taste' I was searching for!
You suddenly feel like you have arrived on the cooking scene! Almost as if 'you' discovered the special ingredient that has been part of the Chinese lore for hundreds of years.

Saturday, June 29, 2019 By Sreedhar Mandyam

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