My love for stir-fried Asian-style noodle dishes runs wide and deep. You’ve heard this a million times, but I just can’t help it. I love them. I never tire of meals like this and while they don’t all end up wowing me and subsequently being posted here, this simple chicken lo mein number certainly did.
So, so super easy to prepare, after the noodles are cooked and the chicken marinades for a quick 15-minute stint, this meal comes together lightening fast. Maybe that’s why I love stir-fried meals so much; I can usually count on the good ones being fast, flavorful and (sorry, I have to do it) freakishly fantastic.
The vegetables could definitely be changed up a bit, depending on what you have on hand. I’m thinking asparagus or cauliflower or green beans or zucchini would work great (among many other things). It’s really the drinkable sauce that makes this meal pop with flavor and pizzazz. I had trouble tracking down fresh stir-fry noodles so I opted for very unauthentic spaghetti and it was still wonderful.
Even though we’ve recently moved back to the land of real, live restaurants (for the last couple of years, we had a few local diners + DQ + Subway unless driving 2 hours for dinner sounds fun), I’m having a hard time getting up the energy to change out of my sweatshirt, pop into society and order something from an official restaurant when a meal like this can be made in less time, with less money, and tastes waaaay better than takeout. Lo Mein = Love.
This meals is already full of vegetables, protein and noodles, so the side dishes could be really simple:
Fresh fruit or Homemade Applesauce
Pao de Queijo (totally not along the Asian flavors but for a fusion meal, this is a fun side dish)
The original recipe calls for fresh stir-fry noodles. You could certainly use them but they are hard to find (at least for me). Dry spaghetti isn't exactly authentic, but it works deliciously. If using fresh noodles, adapt the recipe according to the package directions (they may need to be boiled in advance or you might be able to just toss them in with the sauce and chicken at the end).
- 1 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil or toasted sesame oil
- 1 1/2 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 1/2 tablespoon cornstarch
- 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
- 10 ounces spaghetti, broken in half
- 2 teaspoon canola, vegetable or coconut oil
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1-2 cups broccoli florets, cut into bite-size pieces
- 1 red or yellow bell pepper, diced
- 5 cloves garlic, finely minced or pressed
- 1 teaspoon sesame seeds, toasted or not
- For the marinade, whisk together the broth, soy sauce, vinegar, sesame oil, brown sugar, and cornstarch. Place the chicken in a resealable ziploc bag and pour 1/2 cup of the marinade over the chicken. Seal the bag and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes or up to 4 hours or so, reserving the rest of the sauce.
- Cook the noodles in a pot of boiling, salted water. Drain and rinse lightly with cool water. Set aside.
- In a large 12-inch nonstick skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the chicken in a single layer with space in between each piece so that the chicken browns nicely (you may need to cook the chicken in two batches), seasoning with a light touch of salt and pepper as it cooks. Cook until the chicken is browned on all sides and cooked through, about 3-4 minutes, depending on the size of the chicken pieces. Transfer the chicken to a plate.
- To the hot skillet, add the broccoli, bell peppers and garlic. Stir fry, stirring often, for 2-3 minutes.
- Add the reserved sauce, noodles, and chicken. Cook, tossing every so often so the ingredients are evenly coated in the sauce, for 3-5 minutes, until the sauce thickens and the noodles are heated through.
- Serve and garnish with sesame seeds.
Recipe Source: adapted from a recipe in Cuisine at Home, October 2014 (increased to serve 6 instead of 4, changed up all the sauce ingredients, used dry noodles instead of fresh stir-fry noodles, adapted the method to use the marinade differently)