Chinese takeout often comes to mind when I think comfort food, but it can be greasy and heavy. However, I’ve found a bunch ways to improve on those recipes by making them with fresh ingredients at home. We have an awesome Asian grocery store not too far from our house called Pacific Ocean Market. You can find authentic Asian ingredients as well fresh cut noodles and great prices on produce. Whenever I make Lo Mein, I always buy the Chinese Barbecued pork from their cooked meats counter. There’s no way I could create the red smoke ring that they get from hours of cooking time, and also brings a nice depth of flavor. —Bethany Cornish Smith
thin fresh Chinese egg noodles
sweet soy sauce
1 1/2 tablespoons
Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
chili garlic sauce
freshly cracked black pepper
cloves of garlic, minced
fresh ginger, grated
scallions, whites in 2 inch pieces, greens to sprinkle on top
fresh shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced
head of Napa cabbage, shredded
Chinese barbecued pork, store-bought or homemade, cut into small, bite-sized pieces
o start, you will want to cook the egg noodles, so bring a medium pot of water to a rolling boil. Add the noodles and cook until al dente, or the minimum amount of time suggested by the package. It is important that the noodles aren’t too soft, since you’ll later stir-fry them with the sauce.
Once they are done, drain the noodles and rinse under cold water to remove excess starch. Next, return the noodles to the pot and toss them with the sesame oil until the noodles are well coated. You can set these aside while you finish the rest of the dish.
While the noodles are cooking, you can prepare the sauce. In a small bowl, combine the two kinds of soy sauce, oyster sauce, rice wine, chili garlic sauce, and pepper. Mix it all together with a whisk, then the mixture aside.
Once the pasta has finished cooking, heat a wok or large skillet (as I used) over high heat until a bead of water dropped on it will sizzle and evaporate on contact. Add the vegetable oil and swirl to coat the bottom. Add the garlic, ginger, and scallions and stir-fry until fragrant (should take about 30 seconds). Make sure the garlic doesn’t burn. If it does, you will need to start the stir-fry process over again, as everything will taste bitter. Next, add the mushrooms and cabbage and cook until both have softened and lost some of their water.
Finally you can add the noodles and pork. Pour in the sauce mixture and toss with tongs until the noodles and pork are heated through and well-coated with sauce