By: Elizabeth Webber Akre
If you read my blog, you have probably noticed that I tend to come up with a lot of Asian-inspired meals. Why is that? Well, we like Asian flavors, but more than that, there are endless possibilities. You can stretch meats really far and you can use just about any vegetables you have on hand to come up with something easy and delicious that everybody will eat. At my house, we frequently dine on fried rice, noodle dishes, dumplings and the like.
My daughter loves lo mein. In fact, that’s pretty much her standard order anytime we go out for Chinese. I recently bought (CHEAP) boneless, skinless chicken breasts at Sam’s. Not only were they ridiculously inexpensive, but they were huge. I looked at this chicken and knew I could stretch one of these breasts and feed the three of us. Lo mein came to mind.
Once again, I just looked around for what I had. I had bought one of those Green Giant stir-fry mixes in the produce section. I took out a few of the pea pods (you may call them snow peas) and sliced them diagonally into small pieces. I also cut carrots and broccoli into small pieces.
For the chicken, I mixed up some cornstarch, soy sauce, garlic powder and ground ginger. I sliced the chicken into strips and marinated it for about 1 ½ hours. I wanted the chicken to be small in the final dish, but I didn’t want it to over-marinate, so I stir-fried the strips and then had my sous-chef husband cut them down into bite-sized pieces. While he did that, I cooked ½ lb of spaghetti noodles and drained them. Using veggie oil, I sautéed a little chopped onion with the other vegetables.
From there, all I had to do was add a little chicken broth to the noodles and the chicken. I then gave it all a good mix-up and let it simmer for a couple minutes. And there you have it: Homemade Lo Mein.
The lo mein connoisseur gave me a thumbs up and had two helpings. Sous-chef husband went back for thirds. It took no time at all to cook and with just a few veggies and one chicken breast, we had an ample meal. I do similar dishes with rice; veggies, an egg, whatever meat we have around (chicken, ham, shrimp) and we have a big wok full of fried rice that I think rivals any restaurant. Making your own egg rolls is similar; shred some cabbage, chop the vegetables you have in your fridge, stir-fry with some little bits of meat and roll ‘em up! I hope you’ll try some of your own Asian-style creations. It’s fun, easy and never the same.