Monday, October 5, 2015

Comfort Food - My Recipe Rotation - Cantonese Fried Noodles

From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...I adore noodles, whether they are of the Asian or Italian variety, but there are certain of those dishes that have my name on them. This is one of them. These Cantonese noodles are mildly flavored and quick to prepare. They are easy on the stomach and perfect to serve at the end of a difficult day that has left you frazzled. Once you have mastered cooking with rice noodles, it is impossible to go wrong with this recipe. I don't have universal instructions for cooking with rice noodles, so it is important to read the instructions that come with the package you buy. The brands that are available to me are best if soaked in hot water until they soften. I finish them with a quick, and I do mean quick, toss in the wok that's just enough to heat them through. My early experiments with rice noodles were disastrous. I'd overcook them and they'd melt into the sauce and surrounding vegetables. I'm not always real quick to catch on, so it took a while to figure out what was happening. Once I nailed the procedure, these noodles became a regular, much loved, feature on my table. I first shared the recipe with you back in 2008. Here is what I had to say about them all those years ago.

I was out for most of the day today, so dinner preparation was a last minute affair and had to be rushed. I make these Cantonese noodles when the clock and I are out of sync and I need a meal that comes together quickly. I love these noodles. The Canton region of China has a rich culinary history and serious cooks familiarize themselves with the food of this region. Today's dish is the essence of simplicity. It's nothing more than a bowl of fried noodles, a bit of meat, and some crisp vegetables that are tossed and coated with a shimmering glaze. It's gorgeous to look at, ready in less than 30 minutes and in addition is budget friendly. You just can't go wrong with this dish. A word about noodles - I use dried rice sticks that resemble tagliatelle because I find fresh rice noodles difficult to come by. The noodles, called bahn pho, come from Vietnam and are they are available in sizes S thru XL - go for L or XL. They can be found in any Asian market or purchased from online merchants. Pad Thai noodles can be used in a pinch, but follow box instructions for softening rather than using those given in this recipe. I like this dish well enough to keep the ingredients needed to make it in my pantry at all times. I've never tired of it and I think you will share my enthusiasm once you give the recipe a try. Here is how the noodles are made.

Cantonese Fried Noodles...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite
8 ounces wide dry rice stick noodles (bahn pho)
2 tablespoons soy sauce, divided use
1 tablespoon rice wine
3-1/2 teaspoons cornstarch, divided use
1 teaspoon granulated sugar, divided use
8 ounces tender steak (i.e. sirloin or flatiron), thinly sliced
3 tablespoons oyster sauce
2 teaspoons dark sesame oil
3/4 cup reduced sodium chicken broth
8 ounces snow peas, trimmed and blanched
2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided use


1) Cover rice noodles with boiling water. Let sit 20 minutes stirring occasionally. Drain.
2) Meanwhile, combine 1 tablespoon soy sauce, rice wine, 1-1/2 teaspoons cornstarch, 1/2 teaspoon sugar and beef in a small bowl. Toss to coat.
3) Combine oyster sauce, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, 2 teaspoons cornstarch, chicken broth, 1/2 teaspoon sugar and sesame oil in a small bowl. Mix well. Set aside.
4) Coat bottom and sides of wok with a thin layer of oil or nonstick spray. Heat wok over high heat, add 1 tablespoon oil and warm until it shimmers. Add beef and stir-fry until just cooked, about 1 minute. Transfer beef to a plate.
5) Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to pan. When hot, add drained rice noodles and gently stir-fry until noodles are warm and coated with oil.
6) Add oyster sauce mixture; simmer, stirring slowly, until slightly thickened, about 1 minute. Add snow peas and beef, tossing lightly to combine. Cook until heated through, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a serving platter. Yield: 4 servings.

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Diane said...

We also love noodles, think this might just fit the bill for tomorrow night. Thanks. Have a good week Diane

Lori E said...

Just yesterday my son was asking me noodle questions over the phone and I steered him away from the rice noodles for his first attempt at a stir fry. He was having a guest to dinner and although I have never cooked them I knew they were not for the beginner.
He could probably follow your directions nicely though.

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