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Chicken Chow Fun

This image courtesy of Joseph DeLeo

Chow fun noodles are made of white rice that has been boiled down and run through a press. I buy them at a vegetarian Chinese restaurant at Grand and Bowery Streets. No one who works there speaks English. I say, “Ten dollars forty cents,” and they give me my noodles. The noodles have a very short life. I portion them and freeze them in plastic bags.

Cooking Methodstir-frying

CostInexpensive

Easy

Total Timeunder 1 hour

Kid FriendlyYes

Recipe Coursemain course

Dietary Considerationegg-free, halal, kosher, lactose-free, peanut free, soy free, tree nut free

Mealdinner

Taste and Texturecrisp, salty, savory, umami

Ingredients

  • Two 5- to 6-ounce boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • All purpose flour for dredging
  • ¼ cup good olive oil
  • 2 cups Asian-type vegetables (whatever is available to you, such as bok choy, jicama, snow peas, scallions, shiitake, broccoli, long beans, and peas), chopped if applicable
  • 2 cups fresh chow fun noodles (or 8 ounces dry pad Thai noodles that have been soaked in hot water according to package instructions to soften)
  • 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • ¼ cup Chicken Stock, or any stock or broth

Instructions

  1. Cut the chicken into strips the size of a baby’s index finger. Pour the flour on a plate or in a small bowl. Dredge the chicken in the flour and shake off the excess flour.

  2. Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy sauté pan over high heat until it is hot but not smoking. Gently drop the chicken in the pan, evenly distributing it around the pan. (Be careful; this can be dangerous because the oil is very hot. If you carelessly drop the chicken in, it’ll splatter on your arms and face.) Let the chicken cook, sitting in one spot. Check the underside of one piece. When it becomes medium brown, use the handle of the fry pan to toss the pan and flip the chicken pieces in the pan. It is really hard to flip every piece; just toss the pan a few times to get most of the chicken turned and then use tongs to turn the few remaining pieces so that all the brown faces up.

  3. Add the vegetables. Cut the noodles with scissors so they drop in the pan, and toss. Squeeze the juice of the lemon over everything, drizzle with soy sauce, and then add the chicken stock. Agitate the pan to coat the chicken and noodles with a sticky brown-black glaze and finish cooking for 1 to 2 minutes. Serve in a stainless-steel Chinese dome set if you have one.

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