Chop Suey

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When I heard that the tasty and nutrition-balanced chop suey was an American-Chinese creation, I couldn't believe my ears.

What went into my mind was something like this: "But I've been enjoying it my whole life!" (I was born and raised in China.)It's simply one of the Chinese stir fry recipes that I use most often in my Chinese cooking. It's one of the best Chinese recipes in my freedom-favored opinion.

Chop suey is a Cantonese name for a dish that has various kinds of chopped veggies and meat mixed together. In Mandarin it's Za Sui. It's a Chinese dish that allows you to abandon copycat Chinese recipes once you have the principle, with which you can create your own best Chinese recipes to your taste. Isn't it wonderful?

Here I'm going to give you an example of what I cook. You'll get the "fishing secret", and be able to "catch your fish" soon. :)


1. meat.

Pork -- 1 pound. (you can use Char Siu, the Chinese BBQ pork instead if you already have some at hand.)

  • Tip 1: Choose the kind of meat you like; it can be pork, chicken or beef. You can choose sea food, too, like shrimps. Secret: don't use the dry parts, such as pork chops. Tender is best.

  • Tip 2: Actually, to have meat is optional for chop suey. It'll add some rich flavor to this easy Chinese food recipe though. You can do without the meat. Its versatility allows it to be a Chinese vegetables recipe.

2. Marinade:

  • Soy sauce -- 1 teaspoon
  • Oyster sauce -- 1 - 2 teaspoons
  • Salt -- 1 teaspoon
  • Pepper -- optional, amount to taste
  • Cornstarch -- 1 teaspoon

3. Sauce: (Optional)

  • Chicken broth -- 4 tablespoons
  • Oyster sauce -- 2 teaspoons
  • Cornstarch -- 1 teaspoon

4. Other: (be creative here, choose whatever you like to have. )

  • Bok choy, broccoli, snow pea, or/and bean sprout... -- 1/2 pound
  • Bamboo shoots -- 1/2 cup if you have some, rinsed
  • Fresh mushrooms -- 1/2 pound, pat dry with a paper towel after washing them
  • Water chestnuts -- 1/2 cup if you have them, as fresh as possible
  • Green pepper -- 1
  • Celery -- 2 stalks
  • Onion -- 1
  • Oil for stir-frying

tip: Notice the above mentioned are all vegetables? You can have whatever veggies you like as long as they are not very leafy.


Step 1:

  • Cut the pork into thin strips,(you can use Chinese BBQ pork if you like, here is the Chinese bbq pork recipe) ,put the pork into a bowl with the marinade for about 10 - 15 minutes. Add the cornstarch last right before you cook it.

  • Mix the sauce ingredients and set aside.

  • Meanwhile prepare vegetables. Cut them into small pieces. (Diagonal cuts will make the shapes more fun.)

Step 2:

  • Heat wok and add oil on high, adding the cornstarch to the marinated pork. When oil is hot, add the pork. Stir-fry pork until redness is gone. Remove and set aside.

  • Reheat wok and add more oil. When oil is ready, put in the veggies (the order doesn't matter if you don't have leaf veggies, otherwise put the leaf part in last, such as the bok choy leaf.) Stir-fry. Add the chicken broth or water if you like veggies to be soft; otherwise add salt as desired.

  • Make a "well" in the center of the wok, add the sauce or just oyster sauce, heat it and stir fry with the veggies. Then add in the pork and mix well. Here is the chop suey, ready to be enjoyed. Serve hot.

Chinese food chefOne more tip: You can make chop suey by using different kinds of vegetables according to their colors. (That's what I usually do.) You'll have a simple way to balance the nutrition if you have different colors in you plate. Besides, it's good looking! And that does give you better appetite. :)

Oh, by the way, here is the popular standard for a good Chinese dish: "It smells good, looks good and tastes good."

With the freedom chop suey gives us from the easy Chinese recipes, one can achieve it without much difficulty. That's why chop suey recipes are the best Chinese recipes. Enjoy your creativity!



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