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Pan-Fried Egg Noodles with Pork

Ease of Preparation: Challenging

Preparation Time: 1 hr
dry noodles for 1 1/2 hrs

Cook Time: 25 min

Servings: 4

Recipe By: Eileen Yin-Fei Lo

From:  Mastering the Art of Chinese Cooking
Used with permission of Chronicle

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Pan-Fried Egg Noodles with Pork

This is a classic noodle dish of Hong Kong and Guangzhou, and it depends for its success on pan-frying the noodles to a golden crispness on both sides. The Cantonese call this liang mein wong, which means "both sides fried golden yellow." The fried noodles become the base for a stir-fried topping, and when properly cooked, their crispness resists softening, even under the topping and its sauce. This is an extraordinarily popular presentation, found in virtually every restaurant, from noodle shop to elegant dining room.

2 quarts water
1 tablespoon salt
8 ounces fresh egg noodles (slightly thicker than vermicelli no. 10)
1/2 cup chicken stock or 1/2 cup broth made with chicken broth powder
2 teaspoons double dark soy sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon white rice vinegar
1 teaspoon Shaoxing wine
1 1/2 teaspoons mung bean starch
1 teaspoon sugar
 white pepper to taste
1 1/2 teaspoons sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon light soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon white rice vinegar
1/2 teaspoon Shaoxing wine
1 teaspoon mung bean starch
1 teaspoon sugar
For the dish
5 ounces pork loin, shredded
6 to 7 tablespoons peanut oil
2 teaspoons peeled and minced ginger
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/3 cup diagonally cut julienned snow peas
3  water chestnuts, peeled and julienned (about 1/4 cup)
1/4 cup julienned bamboo shoots
1/2 cup mung bean sprouts, ends removed
1/3 cup cut-up yellow chives (2-inch lengths)
To cook the noodles, bring the water and salt to a boil over high heat. Add noodles and cook for 1 minute, or until they are al dente. Drain the noodles and return to the pot, fill with cold water, and drain again. Repeat one more time, allowing the noodles to dry for 1 1/2 hours in the strainer over a bowl, turning them occasionally so they dry completely.

While noodles are drying, make the sauce and marinade. To make the sauce, mix together all of the ingredients and reserve. To make the marinade, mix together all of the ingredients. Add the pork and turn to coat. Let rest at room temperature.

Heat a 10-inch cast-iron frying pan over high heat for 40 seconds. Add 3 tablespoons of the peanut oil and cover the bottom evenly with the oil. When a wisp of white smoke appears, place noodles in an even layer in the pan, covering the bottom. Lower the heat to medium and fry for 2 minutes. Then, while moving the pan from side to side on the burner to ensure even browning, fry for 3 minutes longer, or until golden brown and crisp on the underside. Turn off the heat.

Slide onto a large, flat plate. Invert a second plate on top of the noodles, and invert the plates together. Remove the top plate, and slide the noodles, browned side up, back into the pan. Over medium heat, and add 1 tablespoon of peanut oil to the pan. Cook noodles on the second side for 2 minutes. Then cook for 3 minutes longer, or until golden brown on the second side. If noodles begin to stick, pour an additional tablespoon of oil into the pan.

While noodles are cooking on the second side, stir-fry the topping. Heat a wok over high heat for 40 seconds. Add 2 tablespoons of the peanut oil and coat the wok with oil. When a wisp of white smoke appears, add ginger and garlic and stir briefly. Add the pork and its marinade and spread the pieces in a single layer. Cook for 2 minutes, or until the pieces turn white along the edges. Turn the pieces over and mix well.

Add snow peas, water chestnuts, and bamboo shoots and stir-fry for 2 minutes, or until the vegetables soften slightly. Make a well in the center of the mixture, stir the sauce, and pour it into the well. Stir and mix well for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the sauce thickens and bubbles. Then add bean sprouts and stir to mix. Turn off the heat and stir in yellow chives. Slide the browned noodles onto a heated serving plate, and cut into 4 wedges. Pour the topping over the wedges and serve.
Chef Suggestions
Yellow chives, which are simply Chinese chives that have been deprived of the sun as they grow, are preferred for this dish, but if you cannot find them, use the white portions of scallions, finely julienned, in their place.

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