YIELD Makes 4 servings
|1/2||cup reduced-sodium soy sauce|
|1/4||cup lime juice|
|2||fresh red Thai chilies or 1 large red jalapeño pepper,* finely chopped*|
|1||cup vegetable oil|
|8||ounces firm tofu, drained and cut into triangles|
|1||(8-ounce) jicama, peeled and chopped or 1 can (8 ounces) sliced water chestnuts, drained|
|2||medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices (1 pound)|
|2||large leeks, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices|
|8||ounces very thin dried rice vermicelli|
|1/4||cup chopped unsalted dry-roasted peanuts|
|2||tablespoons chopped fresh mint|
|2||tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro|
|Mint leaves for garnish|
- Combine soy sauce, sugar, lime juice and chilies in small bowl; set aside.
- Heat oil in wok over medium-high heat until hot. Add tofu; stir-fry 4 minutes per side or until golden. Remove with slotted spatula to baking sheet lined with paper towels; drain.
- Reheat oil. Add jicama; stir-fry 5 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring often. Remove with slotted spoon to same baking sheet. Repeat with sweet potatoes in 2 batches, reheating oil each time. Add leeks. Stir-fry 1 minute. Pour into strainer over heatproof bowl; drain. Reserve 1 tablespoon oil.
- Place water in wok; bring to a boil. Add vermicelli; cook 3 minutes or until tender but still firm, stirring often. Drain and rinse under cold water to stop cooking; drain again and place in large bowl. Add reserved oil; toss lightly to coat. Cut through noodles several times to shorten the strands to 8- or 10-inch lengths.
- Add soy mixture to wok; heat just until sugar dissolves. Add noodles; toss to coat. Gently stir in tofu, vegetables, peanuts, mint and cilantro. Garnish, if desired.
Island cuisine is a mixture of recipes from all the major island regions, including Hawaii, Cuba, the Caribbean and Jamaica.
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