In the time it takes you to phone in the order at the Chinese take-out, pick it up and bring it home, you could have cooked this Shrimp-Vegetable Lo Mein in your kitchen.
I get it when you’re tired and beat, at the end of the day, and have no energy left to cook, the takeout menu looks so tempting. But think about it, this noodle dish only takes less than 30 minutes to cook, and serve from stove to table. And there is nothing as satisfying and delightful, as a homemade noodle dish that’s filled with all the ingredients you yourself prepared and cooked.
This is a forgiving noodle and vegetable dish. You can cook with any vegetables you have on hand. The recipe I shared here is a template. You can go have at it, with as much shrimps and veggies as you desire. You can even omit the shrimps if there are shellfish allergies.
My recipe inspiration came from the abundant quantity of calamansi (Filipino lime) I recently purchased from a New Jersey grower. I have missed the sweet citrusy scent and flavors of calamansi in the Philippines, so when I saw these were available to buy online, I jumped at the chance to cook with it.
This dish cooks fast and easy. In a large wok or skillet, you can quickly stir-fry together the shrimps, vegetables, sauces and seasonings. When done, the long, languid, opaque noodles are the perfect base for the salty shrimps, and vivid medley of fresh, crisp vegetables. I sprinkled the calamansi juice all over as I tossed the noodles together, and I swore it would take a lot of convincing for me to order any takeout dish again.
Shrimp and Vegetable Lo Mein
- Large wok or skillet - about 12 to 14 inches in diameter
- 2 pounds large shrimps, peeled, deveined, heads, tails removed
- 2 teaspoons calamansi juice, for shrimps
- 1 pound (450 g) fresh pre-cooked Chinese noodles, Lo Mein
- 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 whole medium-sized white or yellow onion
- 1 stalk celery, sliced
- 1 whole medium-sized carrot, peeled, sliced thin
- ¼ cup toyo (soy sauce)
- 2 Tablespoons calamansi juice, fresh or frozen; divided, use 1 Tablespoon for stir-fry; rest to sprinkle before serving or use lemon juice
- 1 Tablespoon oyster sauce
- ` teaspoon granulated sugar
- ¾ cup vegetable broth
- 1 to 2 cups broccoli florets and stems, sliced in 1-inch length pieces
- 2 cups shredded cabbage
- ½ teaspoon sesame oil
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon white pepper
- 2 stalks scallion greens, chopped, for garnish
- 4 pieces fresh calamansi, sliced in halves
- 2 Tablespoons toyo (soy sauce)
- steamed rice
To prepare shrimps
- Peel and devein shrimps. Remove the heads and tails.Wash the shrimps in cold, running water.Sprinkle the calamansi juice all over the shrimps for 10 minutes. Set aside.
To prepare the fresh Chinese noodles
- Soak the whole bag of noodles (unopened) in a bowl of very warm water for at least 10 minutes. This helps the noodles expand and ready for cooking.When heated up, open the bag of noodles. Wash the noodles in water. Drain and set aside.
To cook the Shrimp and Vegetable Lo Mein
- In a large wok, or skillet, pour the oil. When oil is hot enough, stir fry the onions, garlic and celery, for 1 to 2 minutes till soft. Add the carrots.Add the shrimps. The shrimps will turn pink in about 5 minutes.Pour the toyo (soy sauce), calamansi, oyster sauce, and broth. Add the sugar. Mix well. Add the rest of the cut-up vegetables. Mix well and cook for 5 minutes till veggies are soft.
- Open the bag of noodles. Run the noodles through water to remove the slimy feeling. Drain well.Add the noodles to the wok or skillet where the shrimps and vegetables are cooking.Incorporate the noodles with the shrimps and vegetables till the sauce coats all the noodles.. Cook for 5 minutes more.Season with sesame oil, salt and pepper. Sprinkle remaining 1 tablespoon of calamansi juice all over the noodles and vegetables.Garnish with scallions. Serve warm with a side dipping sauce of toyo, and sliced calamansi. Serve with rice if desired.
- Noodles: I purchase my pack of fresh Chinese Noodles from the Asian supermarket, and they're found in the refrigerated section. These noodles are thick, opaque, and made of wheat. They come in different varieties. If fresh Chinese noodles are not available, try using linguini noodles. Cook according to package directions before adding to the skillet.Vegetables: Add other vegetables in season like snow peas, green beans, cauliflower, bok choy, napa cabbage or what is preferred. There is no hard and fast rule to this noodle dish.Shrimps: If there are shellfish allergies, omit the shrimps and cook an all-vegetable noodle dish. It is just as delightful.
Notes on Nutrition: The nutrition information provided in the recipe links is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and specific brands of ingredients used.
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