Turnip Lo Mein Recipe – Grain-Free, Paleo-Friendly, AIP modifications
When you go grain-free, you start missing noodles, especially in Asian-inspired meals. There are a lot of ‘noodle’ options out there, but they all left me wanting in some way. Some were too starchy (like the sweet potato noodles you can buy at Asian markets), or had a texture I didn’t like (kelp noodles come to mind).
Then just a few weeks ago, I caved and bought a Spiralizer. Making veggie noodles has been all the rage for a while, so I’m pretty late to get aboard that train. I had a fun time making the most popular veggie noodle – zucchini noodles, or ‘zoodles’. Now don’t get me wrong, zoodles are great, but they really don’t hold up well when you cook them. If you aren’t careful, you’re left with a bunch of mush really quickly. And I definitely don’t want that for my clients’ meals or my own.
A few weeks ago, I was digging through my fridge to find the perfect vegetable for a noodle substitute. I pulled some turnips out of one of the drawers and gave it a spin on the spiralizer. I remembered that Ali from Inspiralized had previously used turnip noodles in a ramen recipe, but I wondered how they would hold up after being heated in a pan. I decided to give them a quick stir-fry to see how they held up after cooking. And. They. Were. Perfect. I quickly made some Asian noodles as quickly as I possibly could and I now make them every chance I can get.
Besides the turnip noodles, the real star of this dish is the cooking fat – lard. I recently rendered my own lard from fatback from a pastured pig we got from Green Button Farm. I’ll post my steps for rendering lard soon, but it is SO simple and you should definitely use lard for this dish. If you don’t have any lard or have fatback to make your own, I’d recommend finding a butcher who sources high quality animals and asking if they have any lard for sale (check out Rose’s Meat Market and Sweet Shop if you’re in the Triangle for some great pastured lard). If you don’t have a way of using lard, you Could substitute coconut oil, just know that it won’t have the same flavor.
I wanted to provide some subs to this recipe to make it AIP friendly. They are in brackets in the recipe below. Since adding a little heat is pivotal to this dish, those following AIP might want to look into using a wasabi/horseradish powder that doesn’t have any preservatives or grain (like this one). I purposely didn’t put an amount for this ingredient because every powder is a little different. Add a little to fit your taste!
Last, I recommend doubling the recipe below. Trust me, you’ll want more! I hope you enjoy!
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