Cheap Appétit Recipes No. 003: Red Curry Tuna with Udon Noodles — Why Eat out When You Can Cook at the Office?

By Tana Kosiyabong

Red Curry Tuna with Udon Noodles

Winter had arrived and I hated it. I didn’t know about others, but I’d rather stay warm and dry in my office than run out in the cold rain to grab some lunch. However, I could only endure so much of ramen noodles, frozen dinners and leftovers at work. I desperately needed better lunch solutions. Fortunately, I have found one in the office’s microwave oven!

Microwave oven is not only great for making ramen noodles and heating up frozen dinners, but also good for cooking (if you know how to work around its limitations). However, you should be mindful while cooking at the office. Otherwise, your sweet coworker(s) could transform into Cruella Deville the minute your masterpiece stank up the office. At the point, nothing could stop those babbling mouths and evil eyes. Although cooking red curry from scratch will reek pungent smells, you don’t have to worry about it if you cook with my shortcuts.

The Red Curry Tuna with Udon Noodles is inspired by a Thai dish called Khanom Jeen Gang Phed. Khanom Jeen is Thai sourdough rice noodles normally served with Gang Phed (red curry), Gang Khiew Wan (green curry), or some other Thai dishes. Since I can’t find Khanom Jeen in Vancouver, I normally substitute it with spaghetti, ramen or udon noodles.

This recipe is also great for any college student who has either a microwave oven or an electric hot-pot in the dorm room.

INGREDIENTS:

Red Curry Tuna with Udon Noodles Ingredients

– A can of Aroy-D red curry soup. For Vancouverites, you can find it at London Drugs for $2.69 or Asia Market (265 East Hastings street; 604.688.6824) for $1.89. If you’re keen on maneuvering through crazy stoners while shopping in a rough neighbourhood, you’ll save a whopping 80 cents there. Totally worth it in my opinion. For those who don’t live near Vancouver, try your local asian grocery stores or order online.

– A pack of udon noodles. I got this one on sale from T&T supermarket for about 60 cents. You should be able to find it in most asian grocery stores across North America. Any brand will do.

– A can of chunk light tuna in water. Look for a good deal at your local grocery stores and stock them up. I got this one for 75 cents.

NOTE: A few Thai hot chilies in the above picture are for decoration only. You can stock up all the three ingredients at the office in advance. Then pull them out when you’d rather stay out of the cold rain or snow.

COOKING INSTRUCTIONS:

Boil udon for 2-1/2 minutes. Drain well.

STEP 1. Add water to a microwave safe bowl. Bring it to boil in the microwave oven at high setting for 3 minutes or so. Add udon noodles into the bowl, then boil 2-1/2 minutes more.

Heat Red Curry for 3 to 3-1/2 minutes.

STEP 2. In the mean time, open a can of Aroy-D red curry soup and pour it into another microwave safe bowl. Once the noodles are ready. Take them out of the oven. Replace with the curry bowl. Heat for 3 to 3-1/2 minutes.

Add drained tuna to noodles.

STEP 3. While waiting for the curry, drain water from the noodles. Open a can of chunk light tuna, drain, then add to the noodle bowl.

Add curry to noodles. Serve hot.

STEP 4. Once the red curry is ready. Pour half of it into the noodle bowl. Serve hot.

You only need about half can of red curry for each package of udon noodles. If you have two packs of udon noodles and tuna, you can make an extra bowl for your boss. It could be the best ass-kissing move you’ve ever made in your entire career. However, if you’re as cheap as I am, keep the other half of the curry in the fridge for lunch tomorrow.

NOTE: The udon package said to cook in boiling water for 3 minutes. However, this recipe calls for 2-1/2 minutes because the residual heat will continue to cook the noodles while waiting for the curry. Also, I didn’t cook chunk tuna with the curry because I’d like to retain its shape.

NOTE FOR VEGETARIANS: Replace tuna with a cup of well-drained canned mushrooms or green beans. Add them to the curry before heating in STEP 2.

©2009 Tana Kosiyabong and CheapAppetite.com™. All rights reserved.

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26 thoughts on “Cheap Appétit Recipes No. 003: Red Curry Tuna with Udon Noodles — Why Eat out When You Can Cook at the Office?

    1. Hey Natasha,
      Thanks for your comment:) I’m glad you like the red curry udon bowl. I’m glad you like the way I cook. I hardly cook from scratch. My kitchen at home is very small and limited. The kitchen at the office is even worse. lol. But no shortcuts for taste!

  1. when i looked at the pix with those cans, i was all “how can u finish the whole can of curry, tanya?” then the “boss-ass-kissing-solution” answered my question. and IT’S TOO FUNNY to even imagine what my boss’s face would turn into if he sees that bowl of noodle placing on his desk. he might start crying!

    1. Hey lululu,
      hahaha, that’s just a suggestion. I’m not the ass-kissing type. 🙂 But perhaps I should be. I hope you meant the boss started crying with “happy” tears. lol. 😛

  2. WOW!! You are so talented and creative! Your noodle dish looks absolutely delicious! I would easily cook those noodles for my family as a week night dinner! So talented! Thanks for sharing! Oh, and I also know about my food stinking up the office….what I can’t believe is how some people actually said something to me about my food!

    1. Patty, I’m glad you like this post. I guess I’m good at finding shortcuts than actually cooking.:) lol. It’s tasty with very little effort. You’re right, it’s also good for a week night dinner too. I hope you’d be able to find this canned curry soup where you are. If you cook at home, I’d recommend you add some fresh Thai sweet basil to the curry. It would add another layer of nice aroma. I here ya about the mean coworkers. I got some of that once in a while. I just ignore them. Take care:)

  3. That is a great quick recipe! I’m a homemaker and am not sure if the bosses will allowed his workers to cook anything funny in the office. haha…. But one thing I’m sure is that your office would smell like heaven! hehe….

    1. Kristy, this recipe didn’t give off pungent smell like when cooking from scratch. So, I think most people should be able to make it at the office. I sure think it smell like heaven too! 🙂

  4. So, you brought those at the office and started cooking? Not bad. It looks really good. I know I’m into healthy eating but I also allow for flexibility. When the worst thing happens, this noodle dish could be it.

  5. Fantastic idea! I love fast meals that are both resourceful and hearty. The microwave is a tricky appliance indeed, but I think it’s a fine skill to understand how it works best with food.

  6. This is so up my alley! I’ve been going canned tuna crazy, but there is only so much tuna salad a girl can eat…

    HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!! Talk to you next year… (I love saying that)

    1. Well… I guess starting next year you can enjoy some red curry tuna with udon noodles then:) Much better than tuna salad IMHO. Happy New Year to you too Tiffany. Talk to u next year too! lol

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