Vegetarian American chopsuey
American chopsuey is a famous and most common dish available in Chinese restaurants in India. The combination of crispy noodles, crunchy vegetables and meat with sauce and egg makes very tasty and appetizing as a popular Indo-Chinese dish. The sauce made for the crunchy noodles is sour and sweet and goes well with our crunchy vegetables and crunchy noodles.
American chopsuey is not an authentic Chinese dish but is an American dish (western side) which was modified by the Chinese restaurateurs to suit their taste. The same way I think our Indian restaurateurs changed the recipe as per Indian taste by adding crispy noodles and fried egg, but there is no evidence and information until now. The only thing I know is, a classic American chop suey consists of macaroni and beef with some vegetables in a tomato based sauce. Chop suey means quickly cooked dish made with vegetables with any meat and egg, combines with a thick sauce. I have never found or tasted American chopsuey in other places except Indo-Chinese restaurants in India.
In India, in Indo-Chinese restaurants, each restaurant serve it differently like crispy noodles mixed with the sauce, meat, vegetables and served with a fried egg or crispy egg on top, with crispy noodles beneath and sauce beneath the noodles mixed with vegetables and any meat.
For vegetarians can prepare with soya chunks or paneer (cottage cheese).
I have prepared the American chopsuey as per my taste and liking and the way Indo - Chinese restaurants serve it, like I have cooked the sauce with meat and vegetables and served with crispy noodles or cook the sauce separately and meat and vegetables separately to have crunchy texture like in the vegetarian American chop suey.
- Oil – 2 tbsp
- Garlic cloves (big, chopped) – 3
- Ginger – 1 tsp
- Onion (small, sliced) – 1/2
- Green chilli (sliced) – 1
- Spring onion (chopped) – 1
- Cauliflower (sliced) – 2 florets
- Cabbage (sliced) – 1/3 cup
- Mushroom (medium) - 2
- Carrot (small) – 1
- Capsicum (green) – 1/4
- Vegetable stock cube – 1
- Water – 1/2 cup
- Tomato Ketchup – 1/4 cup
- Dark soya sauce – 1 1/2 tsp
- Chilli garlic sauce – 1 1/2 tbsp
- Sugar – 1 to 2 tsp
- Chinese salt (MSG, optional) – 1/2 tsp
- White Pepper powder – 1/4 tsp
- Corn starch – 50 ml water + cornflour 1 tsp
- Maggi or ramen – 1 packet or 85 gms
- Corn flour – 1 tbsp
- Fried egg - 1
- Slice all the vegetables in one shape like long slices, carrot long cut, cabbage shredded, cauliflower and other vegetables like julienne cut. You can cut the green part of spring onions finely.
- I have added the vegetables as per my taste and quantity, can add any vegetables as per your taste.
- Boil the noodles (maggi or ramen) in hot water for 1 to 2 min, strain and allow drying.
- Sprinkle some corn flour and mix well, spread it on the tissue pepper or on a plate, keep it aside.
- Heat the oil, when hot add all the noodles by batches on top of the noodles for deep fry, it will take 5 to 7min or cook till it is crispy, turn in between.
- After frying the noodles keep it aside or can be stored in an air tight container for 2 to 3day.
- Take a wider vessel, add oil 11/2tbsp when hot, add garlic (1), onion, white part of spring onion(1), msg(Chinese salt) and all the vegetables except capsicum.
- Sauté for 2 to3 on a high flame, then add capsicum and suate for 30 sec switch off, transfer to a plate keep it aside.
- In the same vessel, add oil 1/2tbsp, when hot add garlic(2), vegetable stock cube, green part of spring onion(1), tomato ketchup, chilli garlic sauce, dark soya sauce, sugar, and water mix all and allow cooking for 3 to 4min on medium flame and on simmer for 5min. Can simmer the flame while adding the sauce as it can splutter on you.
- Add cornstarch (mix water and corn flour together) and white pepper powder, boil for 2min.
- The sauce will be thick consistency and a good bright colour.
- At last add fried vegetables and spring onion (green part), give a boil for 1min, mix all and switch off, keep it aside.
- Instead of placing a fried egg on top can place fried tofu or paneer (cottage cheese).
- Take a plate, place fried noodles, and put the sauce with vegetables and serve hot and eat immediately.
American chop suey has 3 steps
1. Frying crispy noodles
2. Preparing the sauce with vegetables
3. Assembling all noodles, sauce with fried egg on top
For the crispy noodles
Cooking vegetables and sauce
Assembling American chopsuey
- You can chop the vegetables any shape and any size you like.
- For tofu or cottage cheese (paneer), just fry it with 1 garlic cloves, until you get a light brown colour and serve with the sauce.
- You can also use soya chunks or paneer or tofu.
- Always taste the sauce, so that if any thing is needed can add chilli sauce or salt or pepper as per taste.
- For the crispy noodle, you can use rice noodles and fry directly in the deep oil, it will immediately swell up, it will have different texture. In the market I found noodles which were similar like maggi noodles, you can use that as well.
- I have used big garlic cloves and the spring onions were thick and long, use as per your taste.
- If the sauce gets thick, add 50 ml water and cook.
- You can add ginger and green chilli (1) in the sauce and as per your taste. You can also add 1/2 tsp of vinegar.
- You can use black pepper powder instead of white pepper powder.