Before you read any further, check out my video! I filmed myself making this dish and explain what I do and why.
Before I began to cook, I consulted several sources through a simple online search. Let me share what I learned!
If you need a recipe click here to get started! One thing you will notice right away when researching how to make chow mein is that no two recipes are identical. They may share many similarities, but there is no need for them to be exactly the same. This page even provides you with the nutritional information. There is an ingredient list and a good set of instructions, but there are no pictures in this site. If you prefer pictures to show the steps, keep looking!
I found this link with a step-by-step process on how to cook chow mein noodles very helpful. These noodles actually look quite a bit like the instant ramen noodles. I prefer the steam fried noodles. They are very yellow in colour and can be cooked until soft or left crunchy. I did not know that cooking noodles required so much effort! I did not cook mine like this because I used a different variety, but I thought I would share this because it is interesting. The basic concept is that the noodles are boiled and then pan fried. You pat them down to cover the bottom of the pan or wok and then flip it to cook the other side after a few minutes.
This is a recipe that uses a process of pan frying some of the ingredients separately first. This is done in order to retain the individual flavours of each ingredient, and also because cooking times may vary from each ingredient. Eventually everything gets tossed back into the same pan and cooked together. This blog even has a handy link to a page with stir-frying tips and tricks.
This last website is a wikiHow site that shows step-by-step how to make chow mein. I really liked this site because they make it less complicated by stir-frying all of the ingredients together in the pan. I followed a similar manner when I made this dish myself. At the bottom of this page there is a video to help audio-visual learners. This site is cool because it not only has easy to follow directions, but the directions are broken down further into three sections: Prepping your ingredients, Stir-frying and serving your dish, and Making it your own. This would be great for people who have a hard time staying organized and keeping on track.
Last but not least, I saw this video on making chow mein. It was quick and super simple. This person even used egg as their protein in their dish, which shows how you can make it your own according to your own tastes. They have a different method for panfrying the noodles – instead of flipping them (which seems like not all of it would be equally browned anyways), this person simply continues to stir them and loosen the noodles with a fork. I think I would try this method if I used a noodle like this (long and thin, sort of like ramen or angel-hair noodles).
All of these sites had photos, which I appreciated and think really help to explain what they are doing.
This is a very versatile meal that can be done using different kinds of protein (chicken, pork, egg, tofu or vegetarian) and an assortment of veggies (broccoli, bok choy, onion, peppers, celery, mushrooms, carrots, bean sprouts, etc.). Mine turned out to be very delicious!
This is my recipe that I used (remember you can make it your own and a recipe is more of a guideline!). I would continue to use the same sauce ingredients, but change up the veggies and protein based on what I have on hand!
- 2-4 chicken breasts, cut into cubes (easiest when still partially frozen)
- 1 medium onion chopped into sections
- 2-3 stalks of celery, chopped
- 1 bell pepper cut into strips
- 1 1/2 cups of broccoli flowerets, chopped
- 2 cups bok choy
- 2 cloves of garlic, crushed or chopped
- chow mein noodles (I used 2 cups of steam fried noodles)
- 1 1/2 cups of chick stock
- 2 tbsp corn starch
- 1 1/2 tbsp soya sauce
- 1 1/2 tsp brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
This photo was taken near the end of the process. I had just put in the sauce mixture. As the sauce cooked, the corn starch made it thicken. It looks pretty runny here, but the veggies and noodles soaked up most of the liquid!
See! The sauce is hardly noticeable now!
And here is the final product up close.
Next time I make this dish I will definitely try to use different vegetables! Watch the video to see how I did it!