March 16, 2011

Chowmein - My Way!

Chinese food in India has come a long way and created a entire genre of cuisine - Desi Chinese. From street vendors in India to high-end restaurants, we all have a version of the 'oh so delectable' Chowmein. Here is mine :)

1 packet noodles of choice
1" piece ginger
2-3 green chillies
2 pods of garlic
1 carrot
1 green bell pepper
1/4 head cabbage
2 chicken breasts (or tofu)
1 tsp cornflour
3-4 stalks of green onions
3 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp white vinegar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tsp hoisin sauce (optional)

Boil a large saucepan of water. When the water is boiling, put in some salt and a tsp of oil. Drop in the noodles, and cook as long as instructions on the packet. Drain in a colander or a large sieve in the sink. Pour some cool water over the sieve to stop the cooking else it may get overcooked. Mix the noodles with a tsp of oil so they don't stick together.

While the water for the noodles boils, cut the chicken (or tofu) into thin strips and marinate for 10 mintues in 1 tbsp soy sauce, 1 tbsp vinegar and 1 tsp cornflour. Peel and grate the ginger. Crush and chop the garlic. Slice carrots and cabbage into think strips. Remove the seeds and stalk of the bell pepper, then slice diagonally into strips. Cut the ends from the spring onions, and cut the green and white of the onion lengthways.

With everything prepped, you can now start cooking. Heat the wok – it’s hot enough when it starts to smoke. Add the oil and then the chicken/tofu. Use a wooden spoon to keep moving the chicken/tofu around the wok until it is cooked and slightly browned. Put in some salt and pepper and set aside. Now fry the carrots, cabbage and bell pepper separately and set aside. Make sure not to overcook the vegetables, they should have a crunch left on them.

Add some more oil to the wok and put in the green chillies and then ginger and garlic. Fry for a minute. Add the noodles, toss and then add the chicken/tofu and vegetables. Mix in some soy sauce, vinegar, salt and pepper. Let the flavors come together for a minute, then take it off the fire. Garnish with spring onions. If you like a litte smoky flavor add the hoisin sauce and toss again. Serve in bowls – an easy way is to use tongs.

Note: For a good chowmein, it is important to saute all the veggies separately.

No comments:

Post a Comment