We ordered Chinese takeout from my favorite restaurant. I only wanted a massive bowl of chow Mein with the perfect crispness.
Ben tells me, “I think you want lo mein.” I was hesitant. I was 99% sure it was the chow-mein I was looking for. He asked, “Doesn’t the ‘chow’ in chow-mein mean rice?”
He should have stopped talking to me right then. Instead, I got the lo mein but not my crispy noodles. Someone slept on the couch.
If you’re wondering, the main difference between chow mein and lo mein is that the noodles are crispy fried. Chow mein noodles have a crisp texture, while lo mein are boiled until soft.
Both are good, but sometimes all you want is those crispy noodles.
After that mishap, I have been working on a recipe for homemade chowmein. So, I won’t be fighting with Ben about ordering chow-mein or lo-mein.
Then I got it. This recipe uses pan-fried Hong Kong noodles to create the perfect crispy noodles.
You can find this at your local Asian supermarket. It is often sold parboiled, so you can use them straight out of the bag in a pan without boiling them first. They have a crisp, firm texture with chewy, soft spots.
If you cannot find them, or if they are unavailable, do not worry. You can substitute ramen, fettuccine, or linguine (without the seasoning packet).
1/4 cup oyster sauce
Soy sauce, one tablespoon
Three cloves garlic, minced
Ginger freshly grated to 2 teaspoons
Sriracha 1 tablespoon
1 (16-ounce) package of Hong Kong-style pan-fried noodles
To taste, add Kosher Salt and freshly ground Black Pepper
Canola oil two tablespoons
Shiitake mushrooms, one package (3.5 ounces)
4 Baby bok Choy, coarsely chopped
1 cup mung bean sprouts, drained and rinsed
Whisk together the oyster sauce, Sriracha, soy sauce, and ginger in a small bowl. Set aside.
Heat one tablespoon of canola oil over medium-high heat in a large wok or skillet. Add the noodles and stir until golden brown and crispy (about 3-4 minutes). Set aside.
Heat the remaining one tablespoon of canola oil. Cook mushrooms for 3-4 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in the bok choy for about a minute until it is barely wilted.
Stir the noodles and oyster mixture together for about 2 minutes. Stir in the bean sprouts.