Being in a relationship while trying to go on a diet can have its challenges. Men have faster metabolisms and can eat a whole whale without gaining a pound while I will have a bite of a cheesecake and suddenly be 5 pounds heavier – it’s cruel I tell you. I love my fatty burgers, cheesy pastas and greasy pizzas but most of the time, I want to eat clean food. Since quinoa, yogurt parfaits, and salads aren’t exactly on my boyfriend’s favorite foods list, we often have to compromise when dining out. One of our favorite places that isn’t too heavy but too healthy is a Chinese noodle place in Alhambra. The broth is the same for every noodle dish but each is topped with different proteins such as pork belly, minced pork and cabbage or stewed beef. No matter how many times I visit the restaurant, Luscious Dumplings, I always, always, always order the stewed beef noodles – it’s just that darn good. Although I knew I couldn’t remake an exact replica of the dish I had to give it a try.
- 2 lb chuck rib roast
- 1 inch ginger, peeled
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup soy sauce
- 1/2 cup rice wine
- 10 black peppercorns
- 1 tsp Chinese 5 spice
- 2 Thai chili
- 3 scallions, cut into 4 inch pieces
- 2 star anise
- 5 cups water
- 1 lb Chinese egg noodles
- 1/2 lb baby bok choy
- 2 cups beef broth
- 4 cups beef sauce
- Cover the chuck rib roast with water in a large stockpot. Bring to a boil over high heat. Immediately drain the water. Rinse the meat and wash the pot.
- Return the meat to the pot and add the remaining ingredients for the braised beef (up to the 5 cups water). Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 2 hours or until the chuck roast is fork tender. The meat should fall apart without resistance. Remove meat and cut into bite size pieces.
- Strain the beef sauce, discarding the vegetables.
- Cook noodles according to package directions. Drain, and rinse.
- Blanch baby bok choy in salted boiling water, cooking for 2 minutes or until bright green and tender. Drain and shock in ice cold water.
- Combine beef broth with the braising liquid in a medium pot. Bring to a boil. Divide the noodles, bok choy and beef into four bowls. Add the soup to each bowl and serve hot.
**Helpful tips and common mistakes
This recipe for Chinese braised beef stew noodles is not to be confused with Taiwanese beef stew noodles. This version has a lighter broth and is much simpler to prepare.
First step first, make the beef as flavorful and tender as you can! Braising the chuck roast in aromatics such as garlic, ginger, scallions, star anise and adding soy sauce and rice wine to the mix produces a well seasoned beef.
Make sure to boil the beef before braising to remove any impurities. This will help make the sauce clear and free the bones of any blood.
Sure, braising the beef takes 2 hours but it’s down time which means you can lounge around while it’s cooking. Once the beef is fork tender, cook the bok choy and noodles, finish the soup and serve!
This Chinese braised beef stew noodles is, as expected, not an exact replica of the one served at my favorite restaurant. However, the beef is just as tender and the broth is still quite tasty. I can eat this for lunch or dinner, summer or winter!