Happy mother’s day! Strangely we have a whole different day for Mother’s Day, which would be December 22. There’s no harm in celebrating Mother’s Day twice, in fact, we should be celebrating our mothers everyday. They are the very reason for our being. With that being said, I am sharing a recipe from my mother of simple Chinese rice noodle stir fry (kwetiau polos). It is the most common and greasiest breakfast item, and most loved. It is even falsely perceived to be the healthiest, since it has nothing else in it but noodles and a bit of greens. Simple = healthy? Our mornings would start with iced drinks, sometimes hot coffee, a serving of stir fry rice noodles, morning paper and early morning gossip of neighbors and relatives over breakfast table.

Mother loves her stir-fry cooking in the front yard. She moves her little gas stove on small wooden table out to the garden when she is going to cook stir-fry. She is not a fan of fancy gas standing cooker. I wonder if she would change her mind if she sees a Wolf or a Viking. Fortunately the whole thing works really well for me since the yard is brightly and naturally lit (obviously) which explains most of the step-by-step shots in this blog. I set tripod next to the gas and sometimes I catch nice greeneries on the background whilst shooting.

Here we go, some fresh rice noodles. Rinse noodles in cold water to get rid off excess oil. If dried stick rice noodles is used, soak them according to instructions on package.

Bean sprouts and chopped spring onions. We feel the absolute necessity to pick off the itty bitsy end of the sprouts, which is one of the most tedious chores in Chinese cooking.

Some Chinese mustard greens. It is in the same family as bokchoy, but thinner and longer, sometimes with yellow flowery stalks in the middle part. Also known as chaisim or sawi hijau. Substitute with bokchoy if not available.

Heat cooking oil in a wok. Add salt into the hot oil.

Add greens and stir-fry quickly.

Toss in bean sprouts.

Add noodles into the wok.

Work quickly to mix all the ingredients together.

Toss in chopped spring onions. Mushu, my 7-year old golden retriever decides to show himself at the background right there.

Season with soy sauce and a bit of sugar. Work quickly to distribute everything evenly. Don’t overcook the noodles since they would break off and become rice cakes. You would want the nice glides of noodles and a bit of spring when you bite into them.

Remove from heat and serve warm with soy and chili dip. The whole stir-fry cooking should not take longer than 2 minutes, from the first step to the last. That’s what I call speedy cooking. Happy mother’s day and enjoy!

Also famously known as Kwetiau Polos Medan


Chinese Rice Noodle Stir Fry

Makes 4-6 servings


4 tbsp vegetable cooking oil
1/2 tbsp salt
50 g Chinese mustard greens, or chaisim
200 g bean sprouts
500 g fresh rice noodles
2 spring onions, chopped
2 tbsp soy sauce
1/2 tsp sugar (optional)


Heat cooking oil in a wok.
Add salt, mustard greens and stir fry quickly.
Toss in bean sprouts and rice noodles into the wok. Stir-fry for a minute.
Add chopped spring onions into the wok.
Season with soy sauce and sugar. Mix well.
Remove from heat and serve warm.

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8 Responses to “Simple Chinese Rice Noodle Stir Fry”

  1. 1

    Yi @ Yi Reservation — May 7, 2011 @ 10:25 pm

    Love stir-fried noodles. What kind of dipping sauce is that in the first picture? It looks spicy and delicious!

  2. 2

    mycookinghut — May 8, 2011 @ 9:05 am

    Lovely plate of noodle stir-fry! I love the way it is served with a lip-smacking sauce!

  3. 3

    Mrs Erg├╝l — May 8, 2011 @ 9:37 pm

    Love quick meals like this!

  4. 4

    Deborah — May 9, 2011 @ 4:51 pm

    How fun to cook out in the yard – I need one of those stoves! This looks like such a wonderful and satisfying meal.

  5. 5

    kankana — May 11, 2011 @ 12:16 am

    I agree with you .. Mother’s day should be celebrated everyday :) This noodle looks so light and refreshing .. but I eye got stuck in that sauce you displayed .. so loved that.. do you have a recipe for that ?

  6. 6

    Nami @ Just One Cookbook — May 11, 2011 @ 3:08 am

    I love looking at the step-by-step pictures of yours… so beautiful and it’s actually fun to look at! Looks delicious!

  7. 7

    Agnes — May 25, 2011 @ 3:34 am

    Hei Jun, great blog! I have been to North Sumatra several times and love the chinese food very much! I have never found better chinese food than what I had in Medan.

    Additional info, chaisim is often sold under the name “choy sum” in Europe/US.

  8. 8

    Vi Vian — July 10, 2013 @ 10:14 am

    Yes, recipe for the dipping sauce please! It looks grogeous!

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