The Uncomplicated Joy of Vegetable Lo Mein
Prepare to be whisked away on a gustatory journey like no other as you indulge in the exquisite flavors of our Vegetable Lo Mein. This extraordinary dish is far from a mere rendition of a beloved takeout staple; it is a culinary masterpiece that effortlessly combines simplicity and adaptability. Whether you’re seeking a nourishing vegetarian delight or a captivating addition to your meatless Monday ritual, our Vegetable Lo Mein is poised to elevate your dining experience to new heights.
Not only is vegetable lo mein healthful and flavorful, it’s also effortless to prepare. In China, eggless, hand-pulled noodles are a dime a dozen, and that’s what we’re using here. But don’t worry, feel free to substitute them with fresh white noodles, lo mein egg noodles from the Asian grocery store, or even dried spaghetti in a pinch!
When it comes to veggies, the options are bountiful: onions, scallions, bean sprouts, bamboo shoots, carrots, peppers, mushrooms, napa cabbage, leafy greens, peas, or even thinly sliced celery. The best part? You can customize this vegetable lo mein according to your taste buds or the season’s local vegetables at hand.
Vegetable Lo Mein: Ingredients
- 1 pound fresh white noodles or lo mein egg noodles (450g)
- 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons light soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon sugar (dissolved in 1 teaspoon hot water)
- Pinch of five spice powder (optional)
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 clove garlic (minced)
- 1 cup mushrooms (sliced; shiitakes, button mushrooms, or any variety you prefer)
- 1 scallion (separated at the thick parts and cut into 2-inch lengths)
- 1 bell pepper (red, orange, or yellow; julienned)
- 1 small carrot (julienned)
- 1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine
- 1 cup snow peas (trimmed)
- 1 cup leafy greens (bok choy, choy sum, etc.)
- If using fresh white noodles, boil them in a large pot until al dente, then drain and rinse under cold water. If using lo mein egg noodles, you can skip this step as pre-cooking is unnecessary. Set aside the noodles.
- Mix together the soy sauces, sesame oil, dissolved sugar, and five spice powder (if using) in a small bowl.
- Over high heat, warm up a tablespoon of oil in a wok. Add the garlic, mushrooms, and the white parts of the scallions. Stir-fry for 30 seconds before adding the peppers and carrots. Once your wok is piping hot, incorporate the Shaoxing wine. Stir-fry for another minute.
- Add the snow peas and leafy greens into the wok. Once the greens have wilted slightly, introduce your noodles. Ensure the noodles aren’t clumped together before adding them (rinse them in warm water to loosen if necessary).
- Drizzle your sauce mixture over the noodles and stir-fry until the noodles evenly absorb the color. A folding or scoop-and-lift motion is effective for this. Once everything is well-integrated, serve your vegetable lo mein piping hot.
Did you know? Lo mein is a Cantonese dish which translates to “stirred noodles”. Its name comes from the method of preparation – boiling the noodles until they’re just cooked (or “lo”), then mixing them (or “mein”) with stir-fried vegetables and sauce. So, every time you enjoy a bowl of lo mein, you’re partaking in a culinary tradition deeply rooted in Cantonese culture!