Chinese Sausage and Fermented Tofu Carbonara (Furu, 腐乳)
Author: Kathy Yuan | The Mala Market | Inspiration & Ingredients for Sichuan Cooking
1½cubes + liquidwhite furu (fermented tofu, 1:1 cube to its liquid)approx. 1½ tablespoons
dashground fermented white pepper approx. scant 1/8 teaspoon, more for garnish
160gramsdried alkaline wheat noodlesor two servings
1½linksChinese pork sausage, in ¾ inch (2 cm)-long matchstick widths (slice into planes, then stack and slice into strips, cut to width)
2scallion whites, finely sliced
splashpasta cooking waterapprox. ¼ cup
Mash the furu into a homogenous paste (a muddler works well). Whisk in the eggs and dash of white pepper. Set aside.
Bring a pot of water to boil for the noodles and immediately begin the next step of cooking the sausage (before dropping the noodles) so the noodles will be ready to transfer to pan as soon as they are ready. Cook the noodles just over a minute short of package instructions so they are slightlyundercooked, not al dente. If using The Mala Market's dried alkaline noodles, cook for 3:40 instead of the recommended 5 minutes.
While the water comes to a boil, add sliced Chinese sausage to a cold skillet and let the oil come out slowly over low heat. When it's sizzling and very fragrant and most of the oil is out, turn the heat low and drop the sliced scallion whites into the oil. Bloom until fragrant. Add a splash of pasta water to the furu-egg paste and mix well. If the noodles are not ready at this point, add a splash of pasta water to the pan to stop it from burning. If the noodles are ready, transfer them directly to the pan and toss well to coat.
Turn off the heat. Add the furu sauce on top of the noodles and stir (not toss!) rapidly to mix, so the egg doesn't come in immediate contact with the pan. You want to use the noodles to mop around the pan, basically. If it's dry, add more pasta water as needed while stirring to coat. When the sauce is glossy and tight at the edges and thickened to your liking without being too runny, it is done. Serve immediately with more ground white pepper to taste and enjoy.
Note for mixing: The key to not scrambling your eggs is keeping the eggs off the heat of the pan. Continually stirring mops up all that sauce and prevents it from scrambling, so whatever you do, don't stop stirring and swirling the pan.