Crispy Cantonese chow mein is another classic noodle dish that I grew up eating. It’s saucy, crispy, umami, and of course, easy to make. You can easily replace the ingredients to make vegetarian or meat versions. The one I will be making today is a seafood version, but I really love using chicken thighs or pork as well..
Growing up, I remember going to dim sum on the weekends with my family and ordering this. The crispy noodles on the edges were always my favorite. Some of the most common proteins I remember being used was pork, and cuttlefish. Regardless of what type of proteins you like, this dish is absolutely delicious.
My absolute favorite part about crispy Cantonese chow mein is the texture. The noodles are soaked in hot water, then pan fried in a thin layer of oil until golden brown and crispy on both sides. After that, you top it off with a thick sauce which softens the center but keeps the edges crisp. Even after the crispy noodles have been covered in sauce, there is still a unique bite and texture to them.
Key steps and ingredients for crispy Cantonese chow mein
Egg noodles: You will want to buy pre-steamed egg noodles, sometimes called chow mein noodles. They have instructions on the packaging on how to cook them. Usually you only need to soak them in boiling water for 1 minute. This is a picture of the packaging my noodles came with.
Cooking egg noodles: When cooking the egg noodles, you only need to to soak them in hot water for 1 minute. Allow them to completely dry then pan fry in a shallow layer of oil over high heat for about 5 minutes or until golden and crispy. Trust me, this is the best part of the whole dish.
Corn starch slurry: This is an incredibly important step as it is what make the sauce thick. If you have never heard of a corn starch slurry, it is basically water mixed with corn starch.
Oyster sauce: Oyster sauce is the base in terms of flavor for this dish. I would highly recommend getting this, it is an extremely common ingredient in Chinese cooking. I have never experimented with substitutes of any kind so I couldn’t tell you what a good replacement is.
Crispy Cantonese Chow Mein
- 1 lbs shrimp
- ½ lbs scallop
- 1 tbsp oyster sauce
- 1 tsp sugar
- ½ tsp white pepper
- ¼ tsp salt
Corn starch slurry
- 1 tbsp corn starch
- 2 tbsp water
- 200 g egg noodles
- 1 medium carrot
- 1 small yellow onion
- 1 cup bok choy peeled
- 4 cloves garlic sliced
- 1 tbsp ginger sliced
- ⅓ cup canned mushrooms
- 1 tbsp oyster sauce
- ½ tbsp soy sauce
- ½ tsp fish sauce
- 1¼ cup water
- corn starch slurry
- Cut scallops into 1 inch pieces then marinate with shrimp in the rest of the protein ingredients.
- Cut and wash all your vegetables. I thinly slice both the onions and carrots.
- Soak your egg noodles in boiling water for 1 minute then strain and set aside for later.
- Heat up your pan over high heat with 1 tbsp of oil then sear your protein for 2 minutes and set aside.
- Add your prepared vegetables in the same pan then add oyster sauce, soy sauce, and fish sauce. cook for 2-3 minutes.
- Add water and bring it up to a boil.
- Mix corn starch with water to create your corn starch slurry. Once the water is boiling, add it to the pan along with your protein. allow it to simmer for 3-5 minutes until thickens.
- Set aside everything from the pan into a bowl and clean the pan.
- Add 4 tbsp of oil into your pan over high heat and add your egg noodles. Spread them out evenly and cook for 5 minutes per side or until crispy.
- Drain out any excess oil then top with the sauce, protein, vegetables, green onions and chili oil.
If you enjoyed this, check out some more amazing noodle dishes here: