Serves 2 (or 1, if you are a big fan of Indian Chinese cuisine:)
Wow ! Talk about fusion cooking! Indian Chinese is one of the most popular cuisines in India. This cuisine is said to have originated over 100 years ago in India, and boy is it popular ! Not only has it stuck around for 100 years but it also has become mainstream cuisine in restaurants and food carts in India ! One of the reasons, I believe, is because is well suited to the Indian palette as is evident in many of the dishes that blend fiery sauces with some of the Chinese cooking techniques. One such dish is the American Chop Suey!
I am thinking both of my mother and my daughter when I write this. My mother taught Indian Chinese cooking in her classes. I remember her getting up early in the morning for the prep work, mainly cutting the vegetables into fine slivers and match sticks. That is a hallmark of the Indian Chinese food too. I now admire my mother’s patience and diligence in cutting all the vegetables for so many recipes and also for so many people attending her class.
My daughter loves this American Chop suey so much that I remember once she had ordered it ‘to go’, just as we were leaving for the airport, on our way back from India. She just had to have it one more time before we left. And to think that she was such a finicky eater back then ! So she inspired me to create the Indian Chinese American Chop Suey here in America.
The noodles in this dish are traditionally deep fried until crispy. So if you want to do that, cook the noodles ‘al dente’ ,drain and dry them, by spreading them on a kitchen towel. Sprinkle them with a teaspoon of cornstarch and deep fry them in batches. I wanted to experiment with baking the noodles, knowing my own weakness for this delectable cuisine. And while at it, skip the cooking and drying of noodles too…….I know…..faster way to get the chop suey in my mouth:)
So I used Ramen noodles. I slow roast them for a deeper flavor. While the noodles bake, I cut my veggies and make the sauce (which is another key to this yummy dish). The noodles can be slow roasted in a skillet with some oil too. I bake a batch of them, so I have them ready when the hankering for Indian Chinese strikes….which is often!
This dish can also be made with chicken and veggies. It is also topped with an egg cooked ‘sunny side up’ which I skipped as I don’t care much for it, just in this dish, that is.
So this is what I used-
For the noodles-
- 1 packet Ramen noodles.
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil ( I use Kadoya brand)
For the vegetables- (l measured all vegetables after cutting them)
- 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 small onion, sliced
- 1 cup green beans sliced thinly at an angle
- 1 cup carrots, cut into matchsticks about 1/8 inch thick
- 1 cup green pepper, sliced (I used yellow pepper because I had it at home)
- 3 cups white cabbage, sliced thin
- sea salt to taste
- 7 to 8 shakes white pepper
For the sauce, mix together-
- 3 tablespoon ketchup
- 1 tablespoon Sriracha hot sauce (or to taste)
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon Chinese black vinegar (you may use apple cider vinegar if you have that on hand)
- 2 teaspoons brown sugar
- 4 shakes of white pepper powder
- 1 teaspoon tapioca starch combined with 3/8 cup of water. You may also use corn starch.
2 thinly sliced scallions- cut at an angle, both white and green part
To make the Indian Chinese style American Chop Suey-
- Remove noodles from package and separate into 2 squares across the thickness. I did not use the flavor packet. Brush both sides of the noodle squares with the sesame oil and bake in a 200 degree Fahrenheit oven for 30 minutes. Turn the oven up to 300 degrees and let the noodles become golden brown. Flip the noodle squares and let the noodles brown on the other side, another 5 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside to cool. I slow baked them to enhance the flavor. Baking time may vary according to individual ovens. Crush the noodles into pieces after they are cool. Set aside.
- In a stir fry pan or a wok, add the 2 teaspoons of sesame oil on medium high to high heat. Add the garlic and fry until few seconds. Add the onion and all the vegetables in the order given, stir frying 2 to 3 seconds between the different vegetables. Add the salt and pepper, stir and remove mixture to a plate or bowl. The key is to have the vegetables tender crisp.
- Reduce heat, add the sauce to the pan and let it simmer for a minute or so.
- Turn off the heat. Add the stir fried vegetables to the sauce and serve immediately.
- In the serving bowl, add the crushed noodles ,then the hot vegetables and sauce and top with the sliced scallion.The hot sauce warms up the noodles as they soak in the yummy sauce.
Yumminess is all yours! Enjoy!