Yin Yang Noodles

Won Ton Hor Fun


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Makes

    4 to 6

    servings as part of a multi-dish meal

Appears in

Southeast Asian Flavors: Adventures in Cooking the Foods of Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia & Singapore

Southeast Asian Flavors

By Robert Danhi

Published 2008

  • About

This pairing of two kinds of noodles, thin rice vermicelli and wide, thick “kway teow” has a symphony of textures and flavors that awaken the palate. It’s the favorite noodle dish of my wife, Esther, who longs for it since she immigrated from Malaysia. Charred resilient fine threads of rice noodle in silken garlic sauce provide a bed for brilliant jade greens and tender prawns.

Wok hay,” the smoky “breath of the wok” flavor (see sidebar) prized in Asian cookery, is an essential component of this dish. So keep those flames up high. This stir-fry process moves quickly, so get organized. Read the method before starting, so you’ll know where you’re going. Serve the dish with pickled green chilies.


  • ¼ lb. (113 g.) Dried rice vermicelli
  • ¾ lb. (340 g.) Rice noodles, fresh ribbon style, about ½ inch (1.3 cm.) wide (Kway Teow), store-bought or homemade or substitute dried wide rice noodles, cooked
  • 1 tsp. Soy sauce
  • 1 tsp. Dark soy sauce
  • 2 cups (471 ml.) Chicken broth or stock (divided use)
  • 2 Tbsp. Cornstarch
  • ¼ tsp. Kosher salt
  • 1 Tbsp. Oyster sauce
  • ¼ cup Vegetable oil (divided use)
  • 1 Tbsp. Coarsely Minced garlic
  • ¼ lb. (113 g.) Pork shoulder, butt, leg or loin, bite size slice, about ⅛ inch (0.3 cm.) thick
  • ¼ lb. (113 g.) Small shrimp, peeled and deviened
  • ¼ lb. (2 cups/ 457 g.) Choy sum or other Chinese greens, cut into 2-inch (5 cm.) pieces
  • 1 lg. Egg, lightly beaten
  • tsp. Ground white pepper as needed Pickled green chilies


  1. Soak rice vermicelli in room temperature water for 15 minutes. Drain: toss with 1 tsp. light soy sauce. Separate fresh rice noodles (kway teow) into individual strands by peeling them apart; toss them with dark soy sauce.
  2. Get Ready to Stir-fry: Whisk together ¼ cup chicken broth, cornstarch, salt, and oyster sauce; set aside. Select large platter with sides that will hold in gravy. Line everything up in the order that you need it.
  3. Fry the thin noodles: Heat 1 Tbsp. oil a wok or large sauté pan over high heat until it is smoky hot. Add drained thin vermicelli noodles; allow the noodles to cook undisturbed while they sizzle and brown, about 1 to 2 minutes. Flip the vermicelli like a pancake, and repeat browning on other side. You are looking for light brown crispy/chewy edges. Transfer this noodle “pancake” to a serving platter.
  4. Fry the thick noodles: Add another 1 Tbsp. oil to the hot pan; swirl to coat. Add fresh wide rice noodles. Toss well, and then let noodles sit undisturbed until they sizzle and brown. Once they have become well browned on some edges, toss occasionally to attain browned, semi-crispy edges and charred flavor. Arrange these atop the thin noodles on the platter; cover loosely to keep warm.
  5. Stir-fry the final dish: In same pan over highest heat, heat remaining 2 tablespoons of oil until it shimmers but does not smoke. Add garlic; cook until it just begins to brown. Add pork and shrimp; cook until they loose raw appearance. Quickly add chicken broth. Bring to a boil. Stir the cornstarch mixture, and rapidly mix it into boiling sauce; cook until it thickens considerably. Add greens and white pepper; cook 10 seconds. Turn off heat, add eggs, and give only a couple of stirs to create large ribbons of egg (wait about 5 seconds after stirring for the eggs to cook in hot sauce). Taste and adjust seasoning with salt.
  6. Serve: Transfer stir-fry to the platter with the noodles, and serve immediately.