Although I'm not particularly fond of Hong Kong style chow mein with crispy noodles, being more of a lo mein type myself, it's a favorite in the family, so for the New Year's feast it made its way onto the menu. Crispy noodles topped with a saucy beef and vegetable mixture, beef chow mein takes a little preparation but comes together quickly. The components can be made ahead of time and the dish assembled at the last minute.
The noodles I used for my New Year's dinner were actually thinner than those in the photo. The process for cooking them is the same. First boil the noodles for few minutes, rinse with cold water and drain. Toss with a teaspoon of oil to keep the noodles from sticking together. Heat a half cup of oil in a wok or skillet and fry cakes of the noodles for about 3 minutes (until they are golden brown) on both sides. A pound of fresh noodles makes three eight-inch cakes.
For the beef, I used flank steak. Cut the beef against the grain into thin strips. Marinate a half pound of beef with two teaspoons of soy sauce, about a tablespoon of rice wine, and a half teaspoon of cornstarch. After marinating for at least 30 minutes, stir fry the beef until it is no longer pink. Remove the beef from the wok.
In the now cleaned wok, stir fry whatever vegetables you wish to add. For the New Year's dinner I included bok choy, shitake mushrooms, onion and red pepper. Don't over cook the vegetables. Then add two cups stock (I used chicken from the bones from ayam kodok) along with a tablespoon of oyster sauce mixed with two tablespoons of water and two teaspoons of cornstarch. Once the sauce thickens, return the beef and pour over the fried noodles.
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