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Naughty Noodles with Candied Pecans

Ira Lee / Twisted Soul, Valley Table Issue 70

CANDIED PECANS
Ingredients
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
1/2 cup whole pecans

Method
Preheat the oven or oil in a deep-fryer to 350° F.
1. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper, then coat the paper with a nonstick cooking spray.
2. Mix sugar and water in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Increase the heat to medium high, then add the pecans. Stir occasionally.
3. When the pecans are glazed evenly with syrup (about 3 to 4 minutes), use a slotted spoon to remove them from the saucepan, and place them on the parchment.
4. If using an oven, bake the pecans for 15 minutes, turning the nuts once halfway through. If using the deep fryer, place the pecans in a basket, lower into the oil, and cook for 30 seconds. Remove them from the fryer and turn onto lined sheet.
Let cool. Store unused pecans in a sealed container in a dry place.

NAUGHTY SAUCE

Ingredients
1/2 cup Karo corn syrup
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup rice vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons Chinese chile paste or sambal

Method
1. Whisk all ingredients together in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Stirring occasionally.
2. Reduce the sauce until it reaches a syrupy consistency.
Let cool. Refrigerate leftover sauce and use it to glaze fish or poultry, or add to steamed vegetables.

NOODLES

Ingredients
6 ounces fresh lo mein noodles
1/4 cup Naughty sauce (or more to taste)
1/4 cup candied pecans
1/4 cup julienned cucumber
2 tablespoons dried garlic peas
2 tablespoons fresh pea shoots
Serves 1

Method
1. Cook lo mein noodles according to package directions. Remove from heat, drain and let cool.
2. Toss the noodles with ¼ cup Naughty sauce, or more to taste. Place in single-serve bowl.
3. Top the noodles with the pecans, cucumber, garlic peas and pea shoots, and serve.

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