Pad Woon Sen or glass noodle stir-fry is a well-known Thai dish, but this version is lesser known. However, it is the one we make most often at home because it comes from Hainan, my grandma's birthplace! This is one of her signature dishes, and a dish she makes every time I come home to visit. Makes me so happy to know that her recipe will now live on!
If you love noodle stir fries, may I suggest another great recipe? Pancit canton, a Filipino egg noodle stir fry that's very weeknight friendly!
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- 1 ½ Tbsp oyster sauce
- 1 Tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tsp sugar
- ~ ½ cup water or unsalted chicken stock
- ½ tsp white pepper
- 125 g pork leg meat (can use loin or tenderloin) sliced into thin, bite-sized pieces (you can sub any other protein you like)
- 1 tsp soy sauce
- 1 Tbsp water
- 3-4 dried shiitake mushrooms
- 15 g dried black fungus mushroom
- 2 Tbsp dried shrimp, medium or large size
- 80g dry glass noodles
- 2” section daikon, peeled and cut into batons (1.5 cups cut), see note
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- ~½ cup water or unsalted chicken stock
- 2 green onions or 2 stalks Chinese celery
Note: Make sure you peel a couple of layers off the daikon until the colour turns from bright to translucent white. This is because the outer skin is the bitter part.
Prep your dried ingredients (you can do this part in advance):
- Cover the shiitake mushrooms in hot water (I use off-the-boil water for fastest soaking) and let them soak till fully hydrated, about 30 minutes or longer if they are large. Once soaked, squeeze out all the water, cut off the stems and slice into thin pieces.
- Cover the black fungus in hot water for about 15 minutes until fully rehydrated. Slice into ribbons.
- Soak the dried shrimp in hot water for about 10 minutes to soften. Drain.
- Soak the glass noodles in room temp water for 10 minutes and drain immediately. Using scissors, cut the noodles into 2-3 sections to shorten. If not using right away, keep the noodles covered in plastic wrap so they don't dry out.
Make the sauce by stirring together oyster sauce, soy sauce, white pepper, 2 Tbsp of the water or stock, and sugar. Stir to dissolve the sugar.
Prep the protein: Combine pork with soy sauce and water, mix well and let sit for at least 15 minutes or until ready to use. If using seafood, no need to marinade it.
Blanch daikon in salted water boiling water for 3 minutes, then drain.
In a wok heated over medium high heat, add a little oil and when hot, add the pork and spread out the pieces. Let the pork brown without stirring for about a minute. Once browned on the bottom side, give the pork a flip and cook until it is done. Put the pork into a bowl along with any pork juices in the wok.
Add a little more oil into the wok, add garlic and cook until it starts to brown.
Add both mushrooms, daikon and dried shrimp and toss for about 30 seconds to heat through.
Add the noodles, lower heat to medium, then add the sauce and toss until the sauce has been all absorbed. Add about ¼ cup of water and toss until all the liquid has been absorbed. Then taste the noodles to see if they are fully cooked, if not, add a splash more water and keep cooking until done.
Once noodles are done, turn the heat back up to high and add the pork along with any juices in the bowl (do not worry about the extra liquid making it too wet, it won't). Toss to incorporate and to let any extra juices get absorbed. Turn off the heat and toss in green onions or Chinese celery. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
Serve immediately either on its own or as a part of a bigger meal! Enjoy!
Note: This recipe requires a bit of advanced planning: the shiitake can take up to 45 minutes to rehydrate depending on the size of the mushroom, so make sure you plan accordingly!