Saucy Beef Chow Ho Fun Noodles or “sup chow ngau ho” is for the sauce lovers out there and a nice change from the classic “dry fried” beef chow ho fun, or “gon chow ngau ho.”
Dry vs. Saucy Chow Fun
A proper Gon Chow Ngau Ho is all about extra high heat searing beef, noodles, and scallions to “wok hay” perfection. For beginner Chinese cooks, cooking those rice noodles just right can be a little tricky, but with practice, you’ll be able to get restaurant results at home. (We’ve also got plenty of other rice noodle dishes like Thai Pad See Ew if you want to try your hand at a different recipe!)
So maybe you’re struggling with making sure your noodles don’t stick, but are still just saucy enough to achieve the right flavor. Here’s where Sup Chow Ngau Ho comes in handy.
The name literally translates to “wet fried beef ho fun rice noodles,” which in food, translates to noodles coated in a great savory sauce.
The Cantonese have a saying to describe a silky texture in food: “ho wat!” The simple literal translation is “very slippery!” which sounds pretty funny in English, but I assure you, to Cantonese folks and especially those from Hong Kong, this is a highly sought-after texture! Case in point, our silky Chinese steamed egg recipe AKA “wat dan.” It’s all coming together now, right?
For you American Born Chinese (ABCs) out there, you can probably relate to this expression. If not, just make these Saucy Beef Chow Ho Fun Noodles to know what we mean!
Saucy Beef Chow Fun: Recipe Instructions
Cut the rice noodles into 1½-inch wide pieces and set aside. They should be at room temperature.
In a wide shallow bowl, mix the beef, ¼ teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon soy sauce, 1 tablespoon water, 1 teaspoon vegetable oil, and ½ teaspoon cornstarch until the beef is well coated. The beef should absorb the water and soy sauce so there’s no liquid. Set aside for 30 minutes at room temperature. For more information on preparing beef, see Bill’s post on How to Slice and Velvet Beef for stir fries.
In a bowl, combine the warmed stock or water, 1 tablespoon light soy sauce, 2 teaspoons dark soy sauce, 2 tablespoons oyster sauce, ¼ teaspoon sugar, ¼ teaspoon sesame oil, and fresh ground white pepper to taste, and set aside.
Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in your wok until it’s close to smoking. Add the beef to give it a quick sear for 30 seconds on each side. The beef should be cooked to about 80% doneness. Return the beef to the bowl, and set aside.
Turn the heat to medium, and add 1 tablespoon oil to the wok, along with the ginger. Let it caramelize for about 20 seconds. Next, stir in the garlic and immediately add the Chinese black mushrooms and the white portions of the scallions.
Turn the heat to high, and stir-fry for 15 seconds. Add 1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine and the napa cabbage.
Stir-fry for another 15 seconds, and add the sauce mixture you prepared earlier.
Once the sauce starts to simmer and boil, add the fresh ho fun rice noodles, folding them into the sauce so the noodles don’t break apart. Reduce the heat to a simmer if needed, and after 30 seconds (or when the rice noodles are heated through), add the mung bean sprouts and the beef.
Fold in the beef and mung bean sprouts until everything is coated and heated through. Add the green portions of the scallions.
Drizzle in half of the cornstarch slurry while stirring, and cook for 20 seconds. Check the thickness of the sauce. Add more slurry until the sauce is thick enough to coat a spoon.
The sauce consistency and quantity is all per your personal preference. You can adjust the recipe by increasing the amount of stock, seasonings, and/or cornstarch slurry.
The sauce should be allowed to cook for at least 20 seconds after adding the last of the cornstarch slurry to ensure the starch gets cooked. Serve your Beef Chow Ho Fun Noodles with your favorite chili oil!