Paneer chowmein is spicy stir fried indo chinese style noodles tossed with whole green chillies, colorful peppers and lightly browned paneer batons in a sauce made with soy, ginger and spices. These slippery savory noddles with mix of milky softness of paneer and kick from fresh green chilies are just heavenly.
If you go to Delhi, you will find how paneer strangely finds its way into almost everything! There could not be a better example of how we can create mouthwatering recipes with paneer. There are many indo chinese dishes popular with paneer – from chilli paneer to machurian and these chowmein are lip smackingly good!
I studied at Delhi College of Engineering in the campus located in the outskirts of Delhi. When you live away from main hub, the eateries around the campus become a huge part of your student life. This chowmein was the star dish at this place called Apsara restaurant,strangely so I vividly remember the seating, neon walls, huge wall decals and layout of the place even after more than two decades. It was the coolest place with fun milkshakes, ice creams, chaat, street food and some bomb indo chinese. We thronged it often and paneer chowemin with serious amounts of green chilies was my favorite thing to order.
Any good chowmein needs to have a great sauce, vegetables cut in a certain way and in my opinion, the quality of noodles matters the most. The noodles have to be thick enough to crisp during stir frying but not too doughy. Here are few of my pointers to keep in mind when you make these:-
Type of Noodles:- Go for Chings Hakka Noodles or choose chowmein noodles at the asian or american stores. You can also use ramen noodles but whichever kind you choose, make sure the noodles are neither though thin or thick.You want them to crisp up when stir fried on high heat .
Vegetables – I like to add just colorful bell peppers, but cabbage, carrot sticks would be great too. The way you cut the vegetables for the stir fried noodles make a huge difference, do no cut the vegetables in chunks. Try to thinly slice them lengthwise at an angle. This also makes sure that the vegetables don’t over or under cook. The ultimate thing in this chowmein are whole green chilies, use lots of them and you can slit them too if you want!
Sauce– This sweet sticky sauce with dark soy sauce, sweet chilli sauce, green chilli sauce, honey, maggi hot and sweet and touch of coriander is the soul of this recipe. I always say this and repeating again that indo-chinese food gets its taste from indian condiments, many times substitutes great work but the taste is worth a visit to Indian store.
Other Indo Chinese recipes to try :-
- Chicken Manchurian
- Chilli Gobi
- Green Chili & Garlic Noodles
- Gobi Manchurian
- Vegetable Hakka Noodles
- Chili Chicken
- Chicken in Hot Garlic Sauce
- Vegetable Manchurian
- 200 g hakka noodles
- 3 tbsp oil
- 2 tbsp garlic, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp fresh ginger, finely chopped
- 1/3 cup onion, finely chopped
- 3 scallion, white & green parts chopped separately
- 4-5 whole Thai bird green chillies,
- 1/2 cup bell peppers, thinly sliced lengthwise
- 100 g Paneer, cut into small batons
For the Sauce
- 1.5 tbsp Chings dark soy sauce
- 1 tbsp Sweet chilli sauce
- 1/2 tbsp Chings green chili sauce
- 1.5 tbsp Maggi Hot & Sweet Sauce
- 1/2 tbsp honey
- 1/3 tsp coriander powder
- 1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
- 1 tsp white vinegar
- Add all the sauce ingredients to a bowl and mix well. Set aside.
- Cook noodles as per package instructions. Drain, massage with little oil and keep ready.
- In a large wok, add oil and heat up. Add onions, ginger, garilc, scallion white part and green chillies all at once to the wok.Stir fry on high heat for about 2 minutes. Don't brown too much.
- Next add the peppers and paneer to the wok, sprinkle a pinch of salt and stir fry on high heat just for a couple minutes. We dont want to overcook them but the paneer should brown lightly.
- Next add the noodles to the wok.Pour over the sauce that we prepared.
- Using tongs or chopsticks or two forks, toss everything together until the noodles are coated in the sauce and everything is heated through. Let stir fry for about 2 minutes so that the noddles crisp up.
- Remove from heat and add the green part of scallions. Serve immediately.