Burmese Chicken Noodles with Cashew Nuts

This is a recipe that I put together from memory after a wonderful trip to Burma. It came with a specially good bowl of noodles from a little noodle shop near the market in Rangoon. It makes a light meal in itself but you could serve a green salad on the side. Oyster sauce is available in supermarkets or from oriental grocers.


  • 2 large skinless chicken breast fillets or 4-6 boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 1-2 fresh red chillies
  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 1 level tablespoon dark muscovado sugar
  • 225 g/8 oz Chinese egg noodles
  • 350 g/12 oz carrots
  • 5 cm/2 in piece fresh ginger
  • 2 large cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons groundnut oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 75 g/3 oz unsalted cashew nuts
  • leaves from 1 small bunch fresh coriander


Cut the chicken breasts or thighs across in thin slices. Cut the chillies open lengthways under running water and discard the seeds and stem. Cut each piece of chilli again in half lengthways and then slice across as thinly as possible. Put the pieces of chicken in a bowl with the chillies and stir in 1 tablespoon of the oyster sauce and all the brown sugar until the chicken is evenly coated. Cover the bowl and leave on one side.

Cook the noodles according to the directions on the packet, then drain and leave on one side. Peel the carrots and slice across very finely, using a food processor if possible. Peel the ginger and garlic and chop together finely.

Put the oil into a wok or large flameproof casserole over a medium heat. Add the ginger, garlic, turmeric and cashew nuts and stir around for a minute. Then add the chicken mixture and stir for 3-4 minutes until the chicken is just about cooked through. Add the sliced carrots, stir for another minute and then add the noodles and the remaining oyster sauce. Stir for another minute or so until the noodles are warmed through. Lastly, roughly mix in the coriander leaves and serve immediately.