Cantonese style crispy noodle with beef

This dish is commonly featured on the menu of your average Cantonese diner and is delicious yet simple. Although the type of meat and veges used varies, a good version of this dish should (imo) have semi-crunchy noodles and an umami packed sauce.

Whilst you can order this at a restaurant, it is often drenched in oil and seasoned quite heavily. At home, you can control how much oil you use as well as what goes into the sauce.

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Here’s the recipe. Serves 3-4

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp of oil
  • 3 bundles of Chinese egg noodles (get the thin ones. Not flat or hokkein like. Often they come in little dried bundles like this)
  • 150-200 grams beef skirt or other similar cut sliced thinly ~0.5-1cm (semi freeze the beef to allow easier slicing)
  • 1.5 tsp baking soda
  • 1 clove garlic finely chopped
  • 0.5 tbsp ginger finely chopped
  • A bundle of pak choi
  • 1.5 tsp corn flour and 1 tbsp water

Sauce

  • 1 tbsp oyster sauce
  • 3/4 cup of chicken stock or water (if you use water add half a tsp of chicken powder)
  • 0.5 tbsp of soy
  • 0.5 tsp of salt
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • Dash of sesame oil
  • Pinch of white pepper
  • Pinch of five spice powder

Steps

  1. Mix the baking soda with the beef making sure that all the pieces are coated and let rest for 30 minutes. This is similar to what they do in the restaurants to soften the meat.
  2. As the beef is resting, boil some water in a pot and dump in your egg noodles. Turn the heat down a bit after the noodles are in. Let simmer for around 5-7 minutes. Check to make sure its not too soft.
  3. Drain noodles and wash under cold water. After the noodles have cooled make sure you drain as much water out of them as possible. This is crucial as you do not want hot oil exploding everywhere when you fry them.
  4. After resting the beef, wash it in water to get rid of the baking soda. Wash thoroughly.
  5. Heat the oil in a wok/pan on high heat until just about smoking.
  6. Grab your noodles and disperse evenly into the wok. Don’t just drop them in, you want to maximise the crispying surface area.
  7. Fry until you can see the underlying noodles turn brown and hard. Flip and repeat
  8. Turn off the heat when there are a mix of crunchy and slightly soft noodles remaining.Use a pair of forks or chopsticks to slightly loosen up the noodles. Sometimes frying them can cause them to stick together in one large bunch.
  9. Mix the sauce ingredients
  10. Put the wok back on high heat. If there’s not enough oil left in the wok, add a tbsp more.
  11. Add the beef and ginger/garlic. Stir fry until the beef has just a slight tinge of pink.
  12. Add in Pak choi and stir fry until the leaves are just about wilted
  13. Add in mixed sauce ingredients and let the liquid come to a boil. Let it boil for around 1 minute to let the pak choi cook through. Taste and add more salt/sugar if needed.
  14. Mix the cornflour and 1tbsp of water before stirring it through the sauce/meat mixture.
  15. Turn off the heat and dish out the mixture onto the crispy noodles. Enjoy!

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