I don’t eat at fast food restaurants very often at all (but I just discovered amazing carnitas tacos at Filiberto’s, dangerously close to our house) — an occasional hamburger at In n Out, and in the summer, I’ll swing by Wendy’s once in a great while for a chocolate frosty. BUT (here’s the confession part) I do find myself at Panda Express once a month for some ciao mein. I splurge on orange chicken maybe twice a year, but mostly I pick up two containers of the ciao mein — one for dinner — and one for a couple of lunches, and I’m in junk food heaven.
But, I’m so happy! I made that ciao mein myself, and even made it a tiny bit better by adding some ground pork (sorry, Mary) to it, and it’s delicious and umami-y and doesn’t have as much oil as the Panda Express version. You want quick and easy and super delicious vegie ciao men? DONE SON!!!!!
1 package ciao mein noodles (not the refrigerated kind). Cook these in boiling water for a couple of minutes, then drain and rinse in cool water.
1/2 lb. ground pork (optional), sautéed until cooked through.
3 T. oil (I used peanut oil)
1/2 yellow onion, sliced thinly
8 oz. cabbage, sliced
2 oz. celery, sliced thinly
1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
Slice the onion, cabbage and celery. Add the oil to a hot pan–I used a cast iron skillet on medium high heat. When the oil is shimmering, add the veggies and let cook for a couple of minutes until they start to caramelize.
Add the cooked noodles and toss together, then add the soy sauce and oyster sauce and mix noodles and sauces well — I added a couple of tablespoons of water because it seemed a little thick. Toss with the ground pork if you’re using it. Break out the takeout box. Total time — 12 minutes.
That’s it. Welcome to the home version of Panda Express Ciao Mein, but seriously, use better chopsticks than their cruddy ones.