Sometimes all you need is a really good, quick and easy one pot meal after a week of cooking. I spent most of this week and last week prepping for Thanksgiving. Then I spent Wednesday and Thursday cooking. Friday we ate leftovers and the last thing I want to do today is cook an elaborate meal, so I pulled together this Veggie Chowmein dish to share with you. In this post I am sharing a quick and easy recipe for Guyanese style Veggie Chowmein. It is perfect on its own as a quick meatless dish or as a side dish for my roasted chicken.
If you can't find Guyanese chowmein noodles where you live, I've had a lot of luck finding similar noodles at Asian markets and sometimes even in the Asian section at Walmart. But if all of those options fail they are also available on Amazon!
It is loaded with veggies
You can use any combination of veggies in this dish but I like to have bok (pok) choy, red bell peppers, Chinese long bean (bora), carrots and green onions. Often I add baby corn and substitute Chinese long beans (bora) for green/string beans. Sometimes I just use two cups of frozen mixed vegetables or whatever I have on hand at the time and every time it is delicious.
Best pot/pan for this dish
Often I think about how complicated we make cooking, when some of the sweetest foods I have ever eaten were cooked on a fireside with a basic kaharee or pot. The food was great because a kaharee offers a large surface area that is in direct contact with the heat source. The same happens with a wok. It is why stir fry food is so yummy. For this Veggie Chowmein dish, it is best to use a large skillet, wok or kaharee.
Cooking the Veggies
When making this dish I sauté all of the veggies in hot oil until they are cooked but still crunchy. I always cook my bora or string beans first because it takes the longest to cook. Then I add the peppers. If I julienne the carrots I add those in with the peppers but this time I spiralized my carrots so I added those in at the end with the bok choy! It takes about 10 minutes to stir fry the veggies. Very quick and easy.
Putting it all together
For the freshest noodles, cook your noodles while you are sautéing your veggies. Boil the water for the noodles first. Prep the veggies. Then add your noodles to the boiling water. While the noodles are cooking, sauté your veggies. The noodles will be ready right when you need to add them to your stir fried veggies. Once the noddles are cooked I drain the noodles from the water and immediately add to the veggies. Then I sauté the veggie and noddles together for a few minutes and the veggie chowmein is ready. You can use this dish as a base for other types of chowmein as well or check out my Guyanese Style Chicken Chowmein Recipe!
The Veggie Chowmein Recipe:
- 1 packet of chowmein noodles 12 oz or more
- 1 cup of Chinese long beans cut into 1 inch pieces
- 1 cup of julienne carrots
- 2 bundles of bok choy cut into thin strips
- 1 large red bell pepper julienned
- 3 heads of green onions cut into 1 inch pieces
- 3 garlic cloves thinly sliced
- 2 teaspoons of salt
- a pinch of cayenne pepper
- ¼ teaspoon ginger powder or freshly grated ginger
- 1 teaspoon of Chinese 5 spice
- 2 tablespoon of oil for cooking
- Cook chowmein noodles according to instructions on packet, add 1 teaspoon of salt to the water used for cooking the chowmein
- When the noodles soft but still a little firm, drain and set aside
- Warm the oil on medium to high heat in a large sauté pan
- Sauté the garlic and green onions until the garlic is cooked (about 2 minutes)
- Add the Chinese long beans and continue to stir-fry for 3 to five minutes or until the long beans are cooked but still crunchy
- Then, add the carrots and peppers and stir fry for another 2 minutes
- Followed by the bok choy and stir fry for a minute stirring constantly to ensure even cooking
- Next, add 1 teaspoon of salt, the cayenne pepper, ginger powder or freshly grated ginger and Chinese 5 spice to the veggies
- Sauté for another minute or two then add the chowmein noodles to the veggies
- Mix the cooked chowmein noodles together with the sautéed veggies and stir fry for an additional 2 to 3 minutes
- Remove from heat and serve warm
Chowmein noodles is also commonly called Lo Mein noodles in most mainstream supermarkets
You can add other veggies that you like to this dish, mushrooms and baby corn are my favorite additions