This recipe has three of my favourite things to eat: chow mein noodles, Chinese sausages, and gai lan. The salty, rich tasting sauce compliments all the ingredients so well.
Chow mein comes with steamed or crispy noodles. This recipe uses the steamed kind. The egg noodle is long, stringy, and firm. When cooked, it absorbs the flavours of the sauce so well.
So what is Chinese sausage or lap cheong? It is a deep-red, dried, smoked pork sausage that is sweet, salty, and very fatty. It looks like a shrivelled up sausage before you cook it. It has an unique flavour that you just have to try to really appreciate.
Finally, the leafy green called gai lan, or kai lan, Chinese broccoli or Chinese kale (which admittedly I have never heard it referred to as until I did a quick Google search), has flat, large dark blue-green leaves and thick stems. It tastes like a broccoli, but slightly more bitter.
All together it is a FLAVOUR EXPLOSION that is easy and fast to make.
Now onto the recipe.
Prepare your ingredients. Chop up the vegetables, cook the noodles, and make the sauce.
In a wok on medium-high heat, fry Chinese sausage, garlic, and ginger. Remove from the wok and place it on a paper towel.
Increase stove temperature to high heat, steam gai lan stalks first, then add leaves until cooked through.
Add the noodles, green onions, and sauce. Toss to combine. Then add back in the sausage, garlic, and ginger to combine. Remove from heat and serve immediately. Enjoy!
Chow Mein with Chinese Sausage and Gai Lan
Active time: 25 minutes Total time: 30 minutes Serves: 4
- 8 oz Chinese chow mein noodles (steamed noodles)
- 3 Chinese sausages (lap cheong), sliced
- 1 tsp ginger, minced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 ½ cups (5-6 stalks) gai lan, chopped, with leaves separated from stems
- ½ cup green onions, chopped
- ¼ cup water
For the sauce:
- ½ cup chicken broth
- 2 tbsp oyster sauce
- 2 tbsp dark soy sauce
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1 tsp rice vinegar
- ½ tsp sesame oil
- 2 tsp cornstarch
- Cook the noodles according to the package directions, drain water, and set aside.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the sauce ingredients until well combined. Set aside.
- Set the stove temperature to medium-high heat. In a wok, add the Chinese sausage, ginger, and garlic. Stir frequently, letting the sausage fat render, and allowing the ginger and garlic to brown, about 2-3 minutes. Remove the ingredients from the wok and place on top of a paper towel. Leave the remaining fat in the wok.
- Increase the stove temperature to high heat and add the gai lan stems and 2 tbsp of water, cover with a lid* and let it steam, until crisp and tender, about 3 minutes. Then stir in the gai lan leaves and let it steam until it is completely cooked, about 3 minutes.
- Add the noodles, green onions, and the sauce. Using tongs, toss the ingredients until it is well-coated with the sauce, about 2 minutes. Finally, add back the sausage, garlic, and ginger and combine before removing from the heat. Serve immediately.
- * If you do not have a lid for your wok (I used a large lid that belongs to another pot), you can cover the wok with a large metal bowl or aluminum foil. Be careful when removing the lid. You can also boil in shallow water in the wok if you prefer not to use a lid.
- If gai lan is not available, you substitute with bok choy, broccoli, or green cabbage.