Authentic Vegetable Chow Mein

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The real thing - I modified from Epicurious which was a beef chow mein. I like to use a variety of vegetables including broccoli, onion, baby corn, asparagus and capsicum. We don't particularly enjoy bok choy but you can use it.

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  • add   1 teaspoon finely chopped peeled fresh ginger
  • add   5 ounces fresh shiitake mushrooms, stems discarded and caps quartered (2 1/2 cups)
  • add   8 ounces fresh thin Chinese egg noodles
  • add   1/2 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • add   1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • add   6 ounces choy sum, cut into 2 1/2-inch pieces (2 1/2 cups) or inch-wide broccoli florets
  • add   1 tablespoon rice wine (preferably Shaoxing) or medium-dry sherry
  • add   1 teaspoon finely chopped garlic
  • add   3 scallions, cut into 2 1/2-inch pieces (1 cup)
  • add   1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • add   1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • add   1/4 cup peanut oil (or less)
  • add   1 teaspoon cornstarch


  1. Bring 8 cups unsalted water to a boil in a 6- to 8-quart pot, then add noodles, stirring to separate, and cook 15 seconds. Drain in a colander and rinse under cold water until noodles are cool, then shake colander briskly to drain excess water.
  2. Stir together soy sauce, rice wine, oyster sauce, and cornstarch with 1/4 teaspoon white pepper in a small bowl until smooth, then stir in chicken broth.
  3. Heat wok over high heat until a drop of water evaporates within 1 to 2 seconds of contact, then add 1/2 cup peanut oil and heat until just smoking. Carefully add noodles all at once, flattening top to form a 9-inch cake. Cook until underside is golden, 4 to 5 minutes, rotating noodle cake with a metal spatula to brown evenly and lifting edges occasionally to check color.
  4. Carefully flip noodle cake over with spatula and tongs, then cook, rotating cake, until other side is golden, 2 to 3 minutes more. Transfer noodle cake to a large paper-towel-lined plate to drain excess oil. Discard any oil remaining in wok and wipe out wok with paper towels.
  5. Transfer drained noodle cake to a platter and loosely cover with foil to keep warm.
  6. Heat wok over high heat until a drop of water evaporates within 1 to 2 seconds of contact.
  7. Add 1 tablespoon oil to wok over high heat. When oil just begins to smoke, add ginger and garlic and stir-fry 5 seconds, then add scallions and stir-fry 30 seconds. Add mushrooms and stir-fry until softened, about 3 minutes. Add choy sum and stir-fry until leaves are bright green and just wilted, 2 to 3 minutes (if using broccoli, cook until almost crisp-tender).
  8. Stir broth mixture, then pour into wok and stir-fry until sauce is slightly thickened, about 2 minutes.
  9. Return mixture just to a boil, then pour over noodle cake.