Char Siu Chow Fun 叉燒河粉

Today is the Lunar New Year and marks the beginning of the year of the Horse (my mother and sister are both horses!).

Every year my family gathers at my paternal Grandmother’s house to eat a delicious new year’s feast. The new year menu always kicks off with multiple roast ducks, chop suey-style vegetables, rice, sin choy,  roast pork, duck liver potato stuffing, chow fun, all followed by guava chiffon pie. This year my grandmother was thinking about not making chow fun since the noodles are hard to procure where she lives. The thought of a new year celebration without chow fun kicked my butt into gear and I set about testing some chow fun recipes.


This recipe is a result of a few different recipes that I tried out, including Viet World KitchenHawaii’s Best Local Dishes by Jean Watanabe HeeClara Tom’s Old Fashioned Method of Cantonese Chinese Cooking, and 50th Anniversary Best of Our Favorite Recipes 1946-1996 (Maui Cookbook). With, of course, some suggestions from my dad.

I found the noodles in the refrigerated section of my local Chinese supermarket, Great Wall. The noodles I prefer are made by China Boy in Washington, DC. Usually the noodles are steamed or baked for a little to help loosen them up, but I found I didn’t need to do this and it was quite easy to separate them when I got the hang of it.

I am the most happy with the version pictured above. Since I made so many versions during recipe testing, I’m hesitant to provide exact measurements on the sauce. It’s really up to you and your preference on spiciness, saltiness, and oil content. This is a lot less greasy than when I order it out in restaurants, which means it’s easier to enjoy a larger portion.

Char Siu Chow Fun 叉燒河粉 Recipe

By nicole Published: January 31, 2014

  • Yield: 12 Servings
  • Prep: 30 mins
  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Ready In: 60 mins

This is my version of a dish that we have every year as part of the new year celebration. This is more an assembly of dry-fried ingredients than a real recipe. It's all up to your taste and preferences.



  1. Cut the look fun (rice noodles) into approximately 1½ inch strips. Carefully separate the layers of noodles and set aside. Depending on the brand of rice noodles you use, you may need to heat them up slightly before separating them.
  2. Combine the shaoxing, shoyu soy sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil, sugar, dou chi, turmeric, and white pepper. This will be the sauce for the noodles.
  3. Heat the oil in a pan over medium heat. Add ginger, onion, celery, and carrots. Once cooked a little, add and cook the bok choy until reduced and all vegetables have been softened. Note: you can replace bok choy with mustard greens, chinese broccoli, etc. You can also add minced garlic with the ginger.
  4. Add in bean sprouts and stir fry for a minute.
  5. Remove items from pan and set aside.
  6. Add the noodles and sauce to the pan. Cook until desired char is reached. Add stock to give moisture to the noodles if needed.
  7. Add in the char siu and the previously cooked vegetables and stir to combine. Cook until all items are heated through. Sprinkle with sesame seeds (if desired) to add some color contrast.
  8. Before serving, sprinkle the green onion on top and stir to incorporate.

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