Yes I know, I already have an Asian inspired recipe on this site that is very similar to this one. However, it (Seafood and Fried Tofu Low Mein) has a few different ingredients and takes a bit longer to prepare. (It’s really good too!)
So one evening a few days ago I was in a hurry. I wanted chow mein but I didn’t want to spend much time in the kitchen. (You know, there are just some days like that!) So I went to one of my favorite sites for inspiration. And Nagi didn’t let me down. Of course I changed things up from her original recipe, but I still felt it only fair to acknowledge her contribution. You too might want to check out RecipeTin Eats. But back to this recipe.
I loved how easy this one-dish meal came together. And man was the chow mein good! But then I am absolutely crazy about fried tofu. I could eat it almost every day. And in combination with either a bit of shrimp or chicken, this dish is like the best chow mein you could ever hope to find in a restaurant. And not greasy. Not in the least!
So if you need to create a quick one-dish meal some evening, give this chow mein a try. It really is easy and fairly quick to prepare. Plus you can add as many veggies to this basic recipe as you desire. Don’t like tofu, leave it out. Want the chow mein to be meat free, leave out the chicken or shrimp. (The dish as written won’t ever be strictly vegetarian because oyster sauce actually does contain oyster extract or essence.) Want to make the dish GF, use rice noodles and make sure your soy sauce is GF. (GF Tamari is really good for that purpose.)
Anyway you prepare this dish, you are going to be pleased with the results. And this dish warms up beautifully. Which BTW, is almost essential here at Chez Carr. We simply don’t eat as much as we used to and planned-overs are now a regular part of our life.
Note: If you are still cooking for a large family, you just might want to double the recipe. And even then you still might not have any leftovers to warm up for lunch the next day. Believe me, I understand all too well. I still remember feeding my kids when they were teenagers. Leftovers! Huh! It was only a distant dream in those days. Now I’m living the dream, in many more ways than leftovers! Happy cooking my friends.
- ¼ c. soy sauce
- generous 1/3 c. oyster sauce
- ¼ c. dry sherry
- 2 T. cornstarch
- 1½ tsp. sugar
- 1 T. sesame oil
- freshly ground black pepper
- ½ tsp. Sriracha, or more to taste
- 1 pkg. firm tofu, sliced and cut into cubes
- 2 T. vegetable oil
- 4-5 c. thinly sliced napa cabbage
- 1 sm. carrot, chopped fairly small
- 5-6 lg. uncooked shrimp, shelled and cut in thirds or ½ chicken breast, cut into small pieces
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 6 oz. chow mein noodles, cooked al dente
- 4 green onions, sliced diagonally
- 2 c. bean sprouts
Whisk the soy sauce, oyster sauce, dry sherry, cornstarch, sugar, sesame oil, black pepper, and Sriracha together in a small bowl. Set aside.
Gently combine the tofu cubes with 3 tablespoons of the chow mein sauce while you chop the veggies and shell the shrimp or cube the chicken.
When all of the ingredients are prepped, heat the oil in a wok or large non-stick fry pan over medium-high heat. Add the tofu cubes and fry until brown on at least 3 sides. (Reserve the sauce mixture remaining in the bowl after you remove the tofu.) Remove the browned tofu from the pan and set aside. Start noodles cooking.
Add the cabbage and carrot to the pan and stir fry until the cabbage starts to wilt. Add the shrimp or chicken and cook just until done. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute.
Add the cooked noodles, (I lift them directly from the pasta water into the fry pan with a pair of tongs), fried tofu, green onions, bean sprouts, and sauce. (Don’t forget the sauce in which you marinated the tofu). Gently stir fry until the noodles are warmed through and sauce is thickened, about 1 minute. Don’t over-cook. Serve immediately.