This simple chow mein noodles recipe is simple to make and fool-proof.
The hardest part is prepping the veggies and you can use whatever you have on hand.
It is easy to make this recipe your own.
What is in this Trini chow mein noodles recipe
For this recipe, I used:
- chow mein noodles
- sweet pepper
- fresh herbs like chives, cilantro (celery) and chadon beni (culantro)
- soy sauce
- oil (vegetable and sesame)
Optional ingredients can include:
- canned baby corn
- bok choy
- mung bean sprouts
- christophine (called chayote)
- oyster sauce
- other fresh herbs like thai basil, etc
- meat options like chicken, shrimp, etc
How to make this chow mein noodles recipe
To make this recipe, the noodles should be boiled separately while the vegetables are being sautéed. So, when the noodles are soft, they can be added directly to the cooked veggies.
If the noodles are left to stand for several minutes, they tend to stick together. If your noodles have softened before your veggies are ready, strain them. Add some sesame oil to the noodles and toss to mix the oil in. The oil prevents the noodles from clumping together and makes it easy to stir into the vegetables.
But, before we get to all that, let’s start from the beginning.
Prep the vegetables
Step 1: To prep the veggies, simply chop the onion, garlic, ginger, and fresh herbs. Julienne the carrot and thinly slice the sweet pepper and cabbage. You can prep these ingredients ahead of time or the night before.
Boil the noodles
As I mentioned, boiling the noodles and cooking the veggies should happen simultaneously.
Step 2: To boil the noodles, place a large pot on high heat. Add water until the pot is half filled. Add one teaspoon of salt. Cover and allow the water to come to a boil. You can speed up this process by using hot water from your kettle.
I usually start cooking the veggies at this point so you can skip ahead to the next heading and then return here when the water starts boiling.
Step 3: Once the water has come to a boil, reduce the heat to medium and stir in the noodles. Cook according to the directions on the package. These noodles took about 12 minutes to become a bit softer than al dente.
Step 4: Strain the noodles. If you’ve finished cooking the vegetables, toss the noodles in immediately. If they are not ready, as I mentioned before, mix in some sesame oil (about a tablespoon) to ensure the noodles won’t clump together.
Cook the vegetables
While bringing the water to a boil for the noodles, start cooking the vegetables.
Step 5: To do this, place a large saucepan on medium heat and allow to heat up. Add around a tablespoon of vegetable oil and toss in the chopped onion. Cook until they are translucent (around two minutes or so). Next, stir in the garlic and ginger and cook for another minute. If at any time the veggies start sticking to the pan, add a little more oil or a tablespoon or two of water.
Step 6: Add in the julienned carrot and salt (and a little water if necessary). Cover the pot and allow the carrot to steam for 2 to 3 minutes. Uncover and stir the carrot again – it should start to soften. Cover again and allow to steam for another two minutes (add a little water if necessary).
Step 7: Uncover again. Toss in the sweet pepper and cabbage. You can add the fresh herbs, pepper, honey and soy sauce too. Cook for about 5 to 10 minutes covered or uncovered. The sweet pepper and cabbage will release their liquid and cook down.
When all that liquid has boiled off, it is time to add the noodles.
Mix the noodles with the vegetables
Step 8: Add half of the noodles to the cooked vegetables and toss to evenly distribute the veggies. Add the second half and repeat the mixing.
Step 9: If you didn’t add sesame oil to the noodles before, you can add about a tablespoon at this point (adjust down if you prefer a less oily chow mein). Taste test and adjust your salt levels.
Serve hot alongside Trini fried rice, macaroni pie and BBQ chicken. I also enjoy a Chinese themed meal with chow mein and these vegetable spring rolls and wontons.
Chow mein noodles recipe
Trini chow mein noodles recipe
- 200 g chow mein noodles
- 1 onion (chopped)
- 2 cloves garlic (chopped)
- 1 inch ginger (chopped)
- 1 large carrot (julienned)
- 1 large sweet pepper (sliced thinly)
- 100 g cabbage (chopped)
- ½ cup fresh herbs like chives, cilantro and chadon beni (chopped)
- 1 tsp honey
- 1 tsp soy sauce
- 2 – 3 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- Prep the vegetables
- Chop onion, garlic, ginger, cabbage and fresh herbs.
- Julienne the carrot.
- Slice the sweet pepper thinly.
- Place a large pot on high heat.
- Add water until the pot is half filled.
- Add 1 tsp salt.
- Cover and leave the water to boil.
- Place a large saucepan on medium heat.
- Add 1 tbsp vegetable oil and allow to heat up.
- Mix in chopped onions. Cook until translucent (about 2 minutes).
- Add in chopped garlic and ginger. Cook for 1 minute.
- Toss in julienned carrots and 1 tsp of salt. Add 1 – 2 tablespoons of water if necessary to prevent the vegetables from burning.
- Cover and allow the carrots to steam for 2 – 3 minutes.
- Remove cover and stir (add more water if necessary).
- Cover again and cook for another 2 – 3 minutes.
- To the pot of boiling water, lower the heat to medium.
- Add the noodles to the water.
- Stir and boil as per the package instructions until the noodles are slightly softer than al dente (12 minutes is enough for these chown mein noodles) .
- Remove the cover from the saucepan with the carrots.
- Add sweet peppers, cabbage, fresh herbs, pepper, honey and soy sauce.
- Cook for 5 – 10 minutes until all the liquid from the vegetables boil off.
- Strain the noodles once they are soft.
- Mix the noodles with the cooked vegetables.
- Add 1 tbsp sesame oil.
- Adjust salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve hot.