Crispy Noodles with Mixed Vegetables

In this dish, rice vermicelli noodles are deep fried until crisp, then tossed into a colourful selection of stir-fried vegetables.


serves 4
2 large carrots
2 courgettes
4 spring onions
115 g (4 oz) yard-long beans or green beans
115 g (4 oz) dried vermicelli rice noodles or cellophane noodles
groundnut oil, for deep frying
2.5 cm (1 in) fresh root ginger, shredded
fresh red chilli, sliced
115 g (4 oz) fresh shiitake or button mushrooms, thickly sliced
few Chinese cabbage leaves, roughly shredded
75 g (3 oz) beansprouts
30 ml (2 tbsp) light soy sauce
30 ml (2 tbsp) Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
5 ml (1 tsp) sugar
30 ml (2 tbsp) roughly torn fresh coriander leaves


1. Cut the carrots and courgettes into fine sticks. Shred the spring onions into similar-sized pieces. Trim the beans and cut them into short lengths.

2. Break the noodles into lengths of about 7.5 cm (3 in). Half-fill a wok with oil and heat it to 180°C (350°F). Deep fry the raw noodles, a handful at a time, for 1 - 2 minutes until puffed and crispy. Drain on kitchen paper. Pour off all but 30 ml (2 tbsp) of the oil.

3. Reheat the oil in the wok. When hot, add the beans and stir-fry for 2 - 3 minutes.

4. Add the ginger, red chilli, mushrooms, carrots and courgettes and stir-fry for 1 - 2 minutes. Add the Chinese cabbage, beansprouts and spring onions. Stir-fry for 1 minute, then add the soy sauce, rice wine or sherry and sugar. Cook, stirring, for about 30 seconds.

5. Add the noodles and coriander and toss to mix, taking care not to crush the noodles too much. Serve at once, piled up on a plate.

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