Chao Manli Xiaren Mian

Stir-Fried Eels With Prawns In Noodle Soup

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


    as Part of a Chinese Meal, or 2 as a Single Dish.

Appears in

All noodle soups in China use fresh ingredients, and this desire for freshness might disturb Western sensibilities. Eels, for example, harvested from nearby rivers are kept alive at food stalls until ready for cooking. High in protein and inexpensive, eel adds a great deal to the humble noodle soups that the Chinese so love. This is my version of a dish I had at the Gui Yuan Guan restaurant in Hangzhou. If fresh eel is not available, use white fish fillets.


  • 225 g/8 oz fresh eel fillets or any firm, white-fleshed fish fillets such as cod, halibut, haddock, scrod or red snapper, or sole
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon cornflour
  • 225 g/8 oz medium-sized raw prawns, peeled
  • 450 g/1 lb fresh Chinese noodles
  • 850 g/ pt chicken stock
  • tablespoons peanut oil
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped spring onions
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped peeled fresh ginger root
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine or dry sherry
  • 2 teaspoons light soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cornflour mixed with 2 teaspoons water
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil


Cut the eel or fish fillets into long, thin 7.5-cm × 6-mm/3 × ¼-in strips. Combine the eel with the salt, sesame oil, and cornflour and set aside.

Blanch the prawns in a pot of salted, boiling water for 45 seconds. Drain thoroughly and set aside.

Blanch the noodles in a pot of boiling water for 2 minutes. Drain thoroughly and set aside.

In a large pot, bring the stock to a simmer.

Heat a wok or large frying pan until hot. Add the oil, onions, and ginger and stir-fry for 15 seconds. Then add the fish and prawns, and gently stir-fry for 2 minutes. Add the rice wine or sherry, soy sauce, sugar, and salt and stir-fry another minute, making sure to combine them well. Pour in the cornflour mixture and when it has thickened, remove from the heat.

Place the noodles in a very large bowl, add the stock, then the fish and prawn mixture and drizzle over the sesame oil. Serve at once.