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Cooked From the Heart » Filipino, Noodles, pork » LP4 – Pansit Bihon

LP4 – Pansit Bihon

Belated Happy Thanksgiving, to all! I’ve been under the weather lately so I haven’t been posting much. I have to admit that after the cooking marathon that is Thanksgiving, I didn’t have time to actually cook pancit for the Lasang Pinoy 4 event. I had intentions to though. We had it on this year’s Thanksgiving menu, but since I wasn’t feeling quite 100% we decided to omit it this time and may cook it sometime this weekend instead when we are reaching turkey overload.

The photo below is one that I took sometime ago of our quick and easy pansit bihon. The theme for this month’s Lasang Pinoy is soul food. Comfort food that you turn to when you are in need of a hug or just want to be reminded of good times past. Pancit Bihon does this for me. This noodle dish can be made as simply or as fancy as you want to be.

Pancit Bihon

“Soul food” is defined by Wikipediaas being ethnic cuisine traditionally eaten by African-Americans in the Southern United States. Having lived in the south for a while, I can tell you that it is an overly simplistic statement. It is so much more than just the food, it is almost indefinable. It represents so much more than cuisine, it is a lifestyle, a way of relating to family, friends and people in general, it is a way of looking at and dealing with life. Every culture, I think, have their own “soul food”.

Holidays are sometimes hard for me because it is during these times that I miss my family the most. We live close to my husband’s family, but mine is a good couple of thousand miles and several states away. During these times when I am missing them, I tend to turn to the foods of my soul, Filipino food. Pancit bihon is a favorite because it is one of the simplest and easiest to prepare. It is one of those dishes that you can spruce up by adding more embellishments or you can enjoy it just as well in its most basic form.

I always have a pack of pancit bihon (rice noodles) in my cupboard much the same way that rice is a staple. The most basic version I make is:

1 8-oz. pk Bihon (rice noodles)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 lb. pork (sliced in small strips)
1 medium onion, sliced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 cup carrots, julliened
1/2 cup celery, sliced thin
2 cups cabbage, sliced thin
1 cup chicken broth
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
Soy sauce, to taste
Black Pepper, to taste

Soak the noodles in a pan of warm water to soften. Heat the oil and stir fry pork slices until it starts to brown. Add the garlic and onions and saute until fragrant. Add the carrots and celery and stir-fry for a couple of minutes. Add the chicken broth, soy sauce, oyster sauce, cabbage and black pepper. When the broth comes to a boil, add the noodles and mix well, adjust seasonings as needed. Turn the heat to low, cover the pan and simmer until the noodles are cooked through.

You can also add other ingredients to the basic recipe above such as: shrimps, Chinese sausage, green beans, snow peas, mushrooms, etc.

Traditionally, you can also use the following toppings before serving: sliced green onions, fried garlic, lemon, boiled eggs, etc.

Big thanks to Minnette for hosting this round of Lasang Pinoy.

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I am a terrible housekeeper but I do love to cook so it all evens out in the end. I like to try new recipes that I think my family will like. However, I am not one to follow all recipes to the letter. I tend to tweak and change the recipes based on what I have on hand and how I am feeling at the time. Feel free to share your versions, I just might try it out next time I make the dish again.

Filed under: Filipino, Noodles, pork

16 Responses to "LP4 – Pansit Bihon"

  1. [...] suggested that I cook some Filipino food since I didn’t cook any of my usual dishes like pancit and lumpia for Thanksgiving. I quickly nixed that idea because of time and besides, I didn’t [...]

  2. [...] suggested that I cook some Filipino food since I didn’t cook any of my usual dishes like pancit and lumpia for Thanksgiving. I quickly nixed that idea because of time and besides, I didn’t [...]

  3. JMom says:

    Hi GreenMonkey 23, sorry I can’t help you with your question. I don’t know much about the different web browsers. I only use IE and mozilla.

  4. Green_Monkey23 says:

    Sorry for your time…. Why i can’t see images on this resource?
    My Browser is: Opera.
    Thank you.

  5. mike says:

    hooray! mabuhay ang republic of pansit! pansit would be my fave soul food no matter what . . .

  6. Toni says:

    Mmmmmmmmmmm this looks so fantastic!!! :) :) :)

  7. JMom says:

    Hi Iska! How did your pancit turn out? I cooked some last night too, yummm! Had it for lunch again today :-)

    Hi Stel! I use the Filipino brand, Excellente. I tried using the Thai and Chinese brands, but I like the Excellente brand best. Luckily, most of the Asian markets around here carry it. I guess we always turn to the taste we grow up with.

    Hi Sha! I know what you mean about eating it until you burst. I was teasing my hubby last night when I made some, I caught him eating his with rice! I told him he’s turning Filipino :-)
    My mom is the one who told me to use oyster sauce, she said it is a good substitute to the flavor of the shrimps and the juice rendered from the shrimp shells and head that my lola used to strain and add to her pancit. It works, especially when you are doing the basic version of just pork and veggies. It heightens the flavor without all the extras.

  8. sha says:

    J MOM… pancit was my first choice but I knew this will not be missed so I chose biko instead.
    My husband, is addicted to my version that when we eat out at chinesse resto he goes “yours is better”

    the only difference with mine is
    I have never put oyster sauce and I add those ear black mushrooms!

    PS when I was young this is one of our sunday specials, I would eat this till I burst!

  9. drstel says:

    i love when it’s chock full of vegetables…really soothing/comforting our pancit! can you tell me what’s your favorite brand of noodles JMom, please?

  10. iska says:

    hi JMom! i love pancit though i didn’t get much chance cooking it back home. it’s everybody in my family’s specialty but mine. well, i am cooking it tonite!

  11. JMom says:

    Hi Karen, Thanks! :-)

  12. JMom says:

    evil jungle prince, I would be really honored to see your take on this :-) I have made this without meat too, and it is just as good. Just make sure you use a really flavorfull broth.

    joey lol! I think this round is the pancit round :-) I love seeing all the different versions though.

    dexiejane, that’s right, they are a match made in heaven. I actually had pancit and lumpia on the Thanksgiving menu this year, but decided to skip the pancit at the last minute, and just made lumpia. Needless to say, we still have tons of turkey left, but no more lumpias :-)

  13. Karen says:

    Thank you for that annotation on soul food JMom! You’re the perfect resource person for that.

    The pancit looks lovely and I agree with Dexie, it goes so well with her lumpia.

    I’m now ready for breakfast!

  14. dexiejane says:

    this matches my soul food lumpias..lol.

    hope you guys had a lovely thanksgiving :)

  15. joey says:

    Sounds good! I am enjoying the pancit recipes posted in this month’s LP because I have never tried cooking pancit myself and now I have all these recipes I can try :)

    I really agree how food can bring us closer to people and places I miss…a little gartronomic portal :)

  16. Evil Jonny says:

    Wow, looks fantastic. I think I’m going to try this tonight.

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