There is a little bit of a story about the first time I made this for my family. Let’s first take into account that I’ve been writing this blog for nearly 4 years and that I am very proud of the change in attitude with my family about trying new foods. The night that I first served this lo mein to my family and specifically my daughter was one that will go down in history as the “Lo Mein incident”. My daughter does not want me to share all the details so I will spare you from them. Basically she had a full blown tantrum about the fact that the shredded carrots were stuck to the noodles and that we would not allow her to eat with her hands so she could strip the noodles of the offending carrots.
In the world of dealing with picky kids it’s one step forward, two steps back at times.
Today she will happily eat this without flinching about the carrots because we explained that when you eat the noodles and carrots together that you don’t even notice the carrots. I don’t believe in sneaking vegetables into something without making the kids aware of them. Doesn’t feel honest to me.
This side dish cooks up rather quickly and it pays to have prepared and pre-measured all the ingredients before you start cooking. It has been one of my very favorites lately. I try to make it whenever it fits with my menu for dinner but it would also be fantastic all on it’s own. Add some protein like leftover cooked chicken, pork or shrimp and you’ve got a complete meal in one bowl.
Vegetable Lo Mein
(adapted from Quick & Easy Chinese by Nancie McDermott)
- 6 oz. noodles (I use Hakubaku Organic Ramen, authentic Japanese wheat noodles.)
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons dry sherry
- 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
- 1/2 cup shredded carrots
- 2 cups bean sprouts
- 3 tablespoons chopped scallion (green onion)
- 1/2 cup mini corn (cut into chunks) - optional
Cook noodles according to directions on the package. Drain and then rinse with cool water and drain again. Set aside until you are ready to cook the dish. In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, sherry, sugar and salt. Stir to dissolve the salt and sugar.
Heat the oil in a large non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the garlic, ginger, carrot, and mini-corn and toss well. Cook while stirring until the carrot is wilted, about 1 minute.
Add the bean sprouts and the noodles and toss to mix. It is helpful to use two spatulas or wooden spoons to toss the noodles. Add the soy sauce mixture to the pan by pouring around the sides. Continue cooking and stirring to mix evenly, about 1-2 minutes.
Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with the scallions. Serve immediately. Makes enough for 4+ people as side dishes.
Isn’t this the perfect dish to make for New Year’s Eve?