Easy Hor Fun Recipe: Learn to Cook this Traditional Chinese Delicacy – Seaco Online
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Easy Hor Fun Recipe: Learn to Cook this Traditional Chinese Delicacy

Hor Fun, a classic Chinese dish made with flat rice noodles, is a versatile and satisfying meal option that can be enjoyed by people of all ages. Typically served with vegetables, meat, or seafood, this dish is a popular choice for those seeking a filling and delicious meal.

A wok sizzles as a chef tosses rice noodles, bean sprouts, and tender slices of meat in a savory sauce, creating a steaming plate of traditional Chinese hor fun

Hor Fun is believed to have originated in Southern China and is now enjoyed all over the world. The dish is typically made with fresh rice noodles that are stir-fried with vegetables and meat or seafood. The noodles are soft and silky, and they absorb the flavours of the ingredients they are cooked with, making for a delicious and satisfying meal.

If you are looking for a tasty and easy-to-prepare meal, then Hor Fun is a great option. With its soft and silky noodles and delicious ingredients, this dish is sure to become a favourite in your household. Whether you are a meat lover or a seafood enthusiast, there are many different variations of Hor Fun that you can try, so you are sure to find one that suits your taste.

Key Takeaways

  • Hor Fun is a popular Chinese dish made with flat rice noodles.
  • The dish is typically made with fresh rice noodles that are stir-fried with vegetables and meat or seafood.
  • Hor Fun is a delicious and easy-to-prepare meal that is sure to become a favourite in your household.

History and Origin

A chef stirs a wok over a fiery stove, tossing flat rice noodles with succulent slices of beef, bean sprouts, and spring onions, creating the classic Chinese hor fun dish

Hor fun, also known as kway teow, is a type of flat rice noodle that is commonly used in Chinese cuisine. It is believed to have originated in southern China and has been a staple food in the region for centuries.

Cultural Significance

Hor fun is an important part of Chinese culinary culture and is widely consumed in many parts of the world, including Singapore, Malaysia, and Penang. It is often served in hawker centres and zi char restaurants, where it is cooked in a variety of ways with different ingredients.

Regional Variations

Hor fun has many regional variations, and the way it is prepared can vary greatly depending on the region. In Singapore, for example, hor fun is often served with seafood in a thick, savoury gravy. Common types of seafood used in hor fun include prawns, squid, and fish.

In Malaysia, hor fun is typically served with shredded chicken and bean sprouts, while in Penang, it is often served with a spicy, sour soup and fish balls.

If you are looking to add seafood to your hor fun recipe, consider using prawns or squid. These seafood options work well with the savoury gravy and add a delicious flavour to the dish.

Ingredients and Substitutes

A wooden cutting board with fresh ingredients: rice noodles, soy sauce, chicken, vegetables, and various substitute options laid out neatly

When it comes to making hor fun, selecting the right ingredients is key to achieving the perfect taste and texture. Here are some ingredients and substitutes you can use to make your own hor fun recipe:

Noodle Selection

The most important ingredient in hor fun is the noodle itself. Rice noodles are the traditional choice for hor fun, and you can find them in most Asian grocery stores. If you can't find rice noodles, you can substitute with other types of noodles such as udon or soba noodles.

Proteins and Vegetables

Hor fun is a versatile dish that can be made with a variety of proteins and vegetables. Some popular options include chicken, beef, prawns, pork, shrimp, chye sim, bok choy and ginger. Seafood such as squid, clams, and mussels can also be used to add more flavour to the dish.

Sauces and Seasonings

Sauces and seasonings are what give hor fun its signature flavour. Soy sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil, and salt are some of the most common ingredients used to season hor fun. Garlic and ginger are also popular flavour enhancers. To add more depth to the dish, you can also try using other seasonings such as fish sauce, hoisin sauce, or chilli oil.

When it comes to making hor fun, it's important to use high-quality ingredients to achieve the best results. With the right combination of noodles, proteins, vegetables, sauces, and seasonings, you can create a delicious and satisfying meal that everyone will love.

Cooking Techniques

Sizzling wok, tossing hor fun noodles with tender beef, bean sprouts, and scallions in a savory soy sauce. Steam rising

Preparing the Noodles

Hor fun noodles are the star of the dish, and it's important to prepare them correctly. Start by rinsing the noodles in warm water to remove any excess oil. Then, soak them in water for about 30 minutes to soften them up. Drain the water and set the noodles aside.

Achieving Wok Hei

Wok hei is a term used to describe the smoky, charred flavour that is achieved when stir-frying on high heat. To achieve wok hei, heat up your wok until it's smoking hot. Add a tablespoon of cooking oil and swirl it around the wok to coat it evenly. Add the noodles and stir-fry them for about a minute until they start to char.

Creating the Gravy

The gravy is what brings the dish together. Start by mixing chicken stock, oyster sauce, light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, sugar, and pepper in a bowl. Set the mixture aside. In the same wok, add another tablespoon of cooking oil and stir-fry garlic until fragrant. Add pork slices, prawns, and squid (or any other seafood of your choice) and stir-fry them until they're cooked through. Pour in the gravy mixture and bring it to a boil. Thicken the gravy by adding a slurry made of cornstarch and water, stirring continuously until it reaches your desired consistency.

When making hor fun, it's important to use the right type of starch to achieve the desired texture. Cornflour, potato starch, and tapioca starch are all good options. Chinese rice wine can also be added to give the dish a unique flavour. Remember to use high heat and a well-seasoned wok to achieve that perfect wok hei.

Hor Fun Variations

A sizzling wok with stir-fried hor fun noodles, surrounded by fresh bean sprouts, green onions, and slices of tender beef or chicken

If you are a fan of hor fun, you will be pleased to know that there are many variations of this dish. Whether you prefer beef, seafood or vegetarian options, there is a hor fun recipe that will suit your taste buds. In this section, we will explore some of the most popular hor fun variations.

Beef Hor Fun

Beef hor fun is a classic dish that is loved by many. It is made with tender slices of beef, flat rice noodles, and a silky gravy. The dish is usually garnished with bean sprouts, scallions, and cilantro. For an added kick, you can add some chilli flakes or hot sauce to the dish.

Seafood Delights

Seafood lovers will be happy to know that hor fun can also be made with a variety of seafood. Shrimp, squid, and scallops are all great additions to the dish. You can also add some mussels or clams for a briny flavour. For a touch of sweetness, you can add some crab meat or lobster to the dish.

Vegetarian Options

Vegetarians can also enjoy hor fun by using tofu or mushrooms as a substitute for meat. For a burst of flavour, you can add some vegetables like carrots, bell peppers, and broccoli. You can also add some peanuts or cashews for some crunch.

When it comes to hor fun, there are many variations to choose from. You can experiment with different ingredients to create your own unique version of this classic dish. Don't be afraid to add your own twist to the recipe. With a little creativity, you can create a hor fun dish that is truly your own.

If you are a seafood lover, we suggest using shrimp, squid, and scallops in your hor fun recipe. These seafood options will add a delicious flavour to your dish.

Serving and Pairing

A steaming plate of hor fun noodles with savory stir-fried vegetables and tender slices of beef, paired with a side of fragrant jasmine tea


Hor fun is a versatile dish that can be enjoyed with a variety of accompaniments. One popular option is to serve it with pickled green chillies, which add a tangy and slightly spicy kick to the dish. Additionally, a side of fried rice can be served to complement the hor fun, adding a contrasting texture and flavour to the meal.

Another great accompaniment to hor fun is white vinegar. This condiment can be drizzled over the noodles to add a tangy flavour that helps to cut through the richness of the dish. Sweet soy sauce, also known as kicap manis, can be used to add a touch of sweetness to the dish, while vegetable stock can be used to create a savoury broth that can be served alongside the noodles.

Wine and Beverage Pairings

When it comes to pairing hor fun with wine or other beverages, there are a few options that work particularly well. Chinese rice wine is a popular choice, as it complements the savoury and slightly sweet flavours of the dish.

If you prefer non-alcoholic beverages, consider serving hor fun with a refreshing iced tea or a glass of sparkling water. These options help to cleanse the palate between bites and prevent the dish from becoming too heavy.

If you are looking to add seafood to your hor fun, consider using king prawns or squid. These seafood options pair well with the rich and savoury flavours of the dish, adding a subtle sweetness and a contrasting texture to the noodles.

Homemade Hor Fun Noodles

Steam rises from a sizzling wok as thick rice noodles, tender chicken, and crisp vegetables are tossed together in a savory soy-based sauce, creating a mouthwatering Homemade Hor Fun Noodles dish

If you're a fan of Chinese cuisine, you've probably heard of hor fun noodles. These flat rice noodles are a staple in many dishes, from stir-fries to soups. Making your own homemade hor fun noodles is not only easy, but it also ensures that you have fresh noodles that are free from any preservatives or additives.

Making Noodles from Scratch

To make homemade hor fun noodles, you'll need rice flour, water, and a steamer. Mix the rice flour and water together until you have a smooth batter. The batter should be thin, but not watery. You can add a little more water if it's too thick.

Next, heat up your steamer. Grease a flat tray or plate with a little oil, and pour a thin layer of the batter onto it. Steam the batter for 90-120 seconds, or until it's cooked through. Repeat this process until you've used up all the batter.

Once the noodles are cooked, use a spatula to gently remove them from the tray. You can then cut them into the desired size and shape.

Steaming Techniques

There are a few different ways to steam hor fun noodles. Some people prefer to use a bamboo steamer, while others use a metal or plastic steamer. You can also use a wok with a steaming rack.

When steaming the batter, make sure that the water in the steamer is boiling before you add the tray of batter. You should also make sure that the batter is spread evenly across the tray.

If you want to add some seafood to your hor fun noodle dish, you can try using prawns, squid, or fish. These seafood options work well with the soft texture of the noodles.

Overall, making homemade hor fun noodles is a simple process that yields delicious results. Give it a try and impress your family and friends with your culinary skills!

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the essential ingredients for a traditional beef hor fun?

The essential ingredients for a traditional beef hor fun include flat rice noodles (hor fun), beef slices, bean sprouts, scallions, ginger, garlic, soy sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil, and cornstarch. You can also add vegetables like carrots, mushrooms, and bell peppers to enhance the flavor.

How can I make a vegetarian version of hor fun that's still flavourful?

To make a vegetarian version of hor fun, you can replace the beef with tofu, mushrooms, or seitan. You can also add vegetables like bok choy, broccoli, and snow peas to make it more nutritious and flavorful. Use vegetable broth instead of beef broth to make the gravy.

Could you guide me through the steps to create a silky hor fun gravy?

To create a silky hor fun gravy, you need to mix chicken broth, oyster sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil, and cornstarch in a bowl. Heat up a wok or a large frying pan and add some oil. Stir-fry garlic and ginger until fragrant. Add the broth mixture and stir until it thickens. Add the cooked noodles and stir-fry until the gravy coats the noodles evenly.

What are some tips for achieving the perfect texture with hor fun noodles?

To achieve the perfect texture with hor fun noodles, you need to blanch them in hot water for a few seconds before cooking. This helps to soften the noodles and remove any excess starch. You can also add a teaspoon of oil to the water to prevent the noodles from sticking together. When stir-frying the noodles, use high heat and stir quickly to prevent them from becoming mushy.

Can you explain the main differences between chow fun and hor fun dishes?

Chow fun and hor fun dishes are both made with flat rice noodles, but they have some differences. Chow fun is a Cantonese dish that is stir-fried with soy sauce, vegetables, and meat or seafood. It has a drier texture and a smoky flavor due to the high heat used in cooking. Hor fun, on the other hand, is a Southern Chinese dish that is served in a silky gravy made with soy sauce, oyster sauce, and cornstarch. It has a softer texture and a milder flavor.

What's the secret to making a simple yet delicious hor fun at home?

The secret to making a simple yet delicious hor fun at home is to use fresh and high-quality ingredients. Use fresh noodles and vegetables to enhance the flavor. Also, don't overcook the noodles and vegetables to keep them crispy and tender. Finally, use the right amount of seasoning and spices to balance the flavors.

If you want to add seafood to your hor fun, you can use prawns, squid, or scallops. Simply stir-fry them with the vegetables and noodles, or add them to the gravy. This will give your dish a delicious seafood flavor that complements the other ingredients.