Fried Hor Fun with Kale & Beansprouts

Food stylist, writer and cook Shu Han Lee shares four recipes from her first cookbook Chicken and Rice (Fig Tree, Penguin Books), which combines the best of Southeast Asian with British seasonal ingredients

Posted on Mar. 3, 2017
By Editor

Fried Hor Fun with Kale & Beansprouts
Prep 5 mins • Cook 20 mins • Serves 2

There is a version of this in every Southeast Asian country – fresh rice noodles, tossed into a wok with aromatics and a blend of salty, sweet and sometimes sour and spicy sauces. Thailand’s best-known culinary export, pad thai, is flavoured with tamarind and fish sauce; while Penang char kway teow is known for the wonderfully sweet and smoky flavour that comes from caramelised kecap manis (sweet dark soy sauce). Sometimes I get an urge to do something classic, but more often than not I just throw things together and adjust the sauces to my fancy. This is a version I whipped up, flustered, for a vegan friend (she’s the one who taught me about sources of plant protein in kale, sprouts, and fermented soy), but there are options for meat eaters below. 

For meat-eaters, add thin slices of pork shoulder or beef, marinated first in the beancurd mixture with a little dash of Shaoxing rice wine. You can also vary things by using 2 tbsp of oyster sauce to replace the fermented beancurd and kecap manis – this gives a flavour that’s quite different, but in a good, delicious kind of way.


  • 300g fresh hor fun (fresh flat rice noodles)
  • 2 handfuls of beansprouts
  • 1 bunch of fresh kale (about 200g)
  • 1 cube of fermented beancurd
  • 1 tbsp raw chilli
  • garlic ginger sauce
  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp kecap manis (or, to substitute, 1 tbsp light soy sauce and 1 tbsp 
  • 2 tbsp groundnut oil


Step 1

Rinse the hor fun and drain well. Rinse the beansprouts and if you can be bothered, trim them. Rinse the kale and chop into bite-size pieces.

Step 2

Mash the fermented beancurd in a little bowl and combine with the chilli garlic ginger sauce, light soy sauce and kecap manis.

Step 3

Heat the oil in a wok until smoking hot and fry the shallots, stirring quickly to prevent them from burning. Once fragrant, add the hor fun and kale and stir-fry for a few minutes, until the kale just begins to wilt. Pour in the beancurd mixture and stir well, making sure everything is well coated. Continue stir-frying for 4–5 mins, until the noodles are lightly browned and caramelised.

Step 4

Add the beansprouts and give everything a few final tosses to combine. Cook for another min or so; the beansprouts should still be crunchy. Serve immediately.

Recipe: Lee Shu Han
Photograph: Fig Tree, Penguin Books

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