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Chow mein revisited from my childhood in Tahiti, in 1985!

Chow mein from my childhood in Tahiti revisited

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  • Post category:Easy Recipes

Chow mein (炒面) is a dish from Cantonese cuisine (southeast China). It consists of wheat noodles, vegetables, meat and/or seafood, often accompanied by a soy sauce-based sauce.According to Chinese tradition, this dish was brought to North America by the first immigrants from China in the 19th century, and is now a very popular specialty in the United States and Canada, as well as in other countries with large Chinese communities as in Southeast Asia, India, Reunion Island, Mauritius and Tahiti.

I first discovered this recipe in 1985, when my parents and I went to eat in the food-trucs on the port of Papeete in Tahiti. So, after 40 years, I’ve tried to rediscover the taste I loved so much back then and offer you a Chow mein revisited in 2024.

Special utensils

  • A wok or large frying pan

Ingredients for 3 persons

  • 150 g « Large (2mm) » soft wheat Chinese noodles
  • Vegetable oil
  • A few drops of sesame oil
  • 80 g chicken breast, finely diced
  • 80 g peeled shrimp, cut into 2 cm pieces
  • 80 g pork loin, finely diced
  • 1/2 chicken bouillon cube delayed in a glass of water.
  • 1 teaspoon rice starch
  • 1 teaspoon sugar or honey
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped ginger
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 3 tablespoons light soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce.
  • Pepper.
Ingredients of Chow mein revisited from my childhood in Tahiti, in 1985!
Ingredients of Chow mein revisited from my childhood in Tahiti, in 1985!
  • 100 g onion, thinly sliced
  • 80 g carrot sticks
  • 80 g Chinese cabbage leaf strips.
  • 80 g peas

Preparation of Chow mein

  • Pre-cook Chinese noodles according to package instructions. Rinse in cold water, drain well and set aside.
  • To prepare the marinade: mix the 1 tablespoon of oyster sauce, the 3 tablespoons of dark soy sauce, the teaspoon of ginger, the teaspoon of garlic, the teaspoon of rice starch, the teaspoon of sugar, pepper and a tablespoon of oil.
  • Marinate meat and shrimp.
  • Dry the noodles for a minute in hot oil flavored with a few drops of sesame oil and keep warm.

Cooking Chow mein

  • Pan-fry the meat and shrimp for a few minutes, then add the remaining marinade to cook the chicken and pork. Set aside.
  • Deglaze pan with chicken stock and set aside.
  • Heat the vegetable oil in a large wok or frying pan over medium-high heat.
  • Add the carrot sticks and minced onion and cook until translucent.
Cooking of Chow mein revisited from my childhood in Tahiti, in 1985!
Cooking of Chow mein revisited from my childhood in Tahiti, in 1985!
  • Add the Chinese cabbage to the pan and moisten with the deglazing and chicken stock mixture.
  • Add the chow mein meat.
  • Simmer for about 2 minutes until vegetables are crisp-tender.
  • Add the noodles and stir-fry the Chow mein for about 2 minutes, until the noodles are well coated with the sauce.

Tips

  • Rinsing pasta is essential if you want to deep-fry it in the back of an Asian recipe. Too much starch can make them sticky and difficult to fry. In this case, rinse the pasta for a few minutes as soon as it comes out of the pan.

Original ideas (Anthony corner)

  1. Broad pasta can be replaced by thin pasta, or rice pasta can be used for frying.
  2. You can add crunch with crushed peanuts.
  3. Chow mein can be sweetened with Chinese sausages, or pork loin can be substituted.

« Classic or modern, there’s only one kitchen…The right one. »

Paul Bocuse

French chef named « Chef of the Century » in 1989

On the channel, there are already chicken wings with Coca-Cola, and as I love Asian recipes, I propose this Chow-mein from 40 years ago. I made this Chow-mein inspired by some Tahitian recipes, while keeping the Chinese base with soy sauce and oyster sauce. I quickly eliminated the ingredients that weren’t present at the time and tested several marinades and variations with sesame oil. I kept the sesame oil in the pasta.

As for the vegetables, my family remembered peas, so I added them to the basic vegetables of onions, carrots and cabbage. As the cook was Chinese at the time, I preferred Chinese cabbage to white cabbage. The result is close to the Chow-Mein of my childhood.

Feel free to comment on my Youtube channel. If you have made this recipe.

Follow my recipe for Chow mein on Youtube