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Bihun Goreng (Stir Fry Rice Vermicelli)

Posting Date: 01/12/16

Bihun Goreng (Stir Fry Rice Vermicelli)

Bihun Goreng (Stir Fried Rice Vermicelli) is of Chinese origin. However, this dish is popular in Indonesia and has been modified to Indonesian's taste by adding sweet soy sauce. It is normally served as a main dish and very satisfying. People can find it in a lot of Chinese restaurants in Indonesia. It is served with pickled cucumber on the side. Since Indonesians like their food hot and spicy, it is also served with chili sauce on the side.

One thing I learned is if I marinate rice vermicelli with soy sauce, oyster sauce, and sweet soy sauce for 30 min or more after I cook, rinse, and drain rice vermicelli, it soaks up the flavor better than if I put the sauces while stir frying rice vermicelli and everything else on the pan. Marinating rice vermicelli is not the way Indonesians do it, though but who cares about the authentic way if it tastes better marinating it?

This dish is very versatile. You can use it with any meat you like. I normally use chicken or shrimp or no meat at all. However, you can make it vegetarian by removing the meat and substituting oyster sauce with vegetarian oyster sauce or skipping oyster sauce altogether. If you want some protein, you can use tofu instead of the meat. Please see notes below on how to prepare tofu. If I make it vegetarian, I will add more vegetables, such as bok choy, bell pepper, broccoli, etc. The choice is endless.


  • 3 sheets of rice vermicelli
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 shallots, sliced
  • 1/2 lbs skinless and boneless chicken breast, thinly sliced or 1/2 lbs shrimp. To make it vegetarian, skip the meat or substitute with sliced tofu. To prepare tofu, see notes below.
  • 1 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup cabbage, sliced
  • 1 celery stalk, thinly sliced
  • 1 carrot, julienned
  • 2 tablespoon sweet soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoon oyster sauce. To make it vegetarian, use vegetarian oyster sauce.
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 1 cup bean sprouts, rinsed and drained
  • 2 green onions, sliced


  1. Cook rice vermicelli according to package instructions. While cooking it, make sure you stir the pot once a while. Rice vermicelli has a lot of starches and some brands have more than the other. Stirring it while cooking will prevent it from sticking to the bottom of the pot. Do not overcook it since it will finish cooking with the other ingredients. Drain rice vermicelli and rinse it with cold water to make sure it won't stick with each other. Drain it again on a strainer and shake the strainer to make sure excess water is removed. Set it aside on a strainer for at least 15 min to make sure it get rid of more water. We don't want it too wet when we cook it with the other ingredients. So, removing excess water is an important step.
  2. As mentioned in the introduction, I prefer to marinate rice vermicelli with sauces prior to cooking it since it soaks up the flavor better. If you prefer this way, too, combine soy sauce, oyster sauce, and sweet soy sauce in a bowl big enough to hold rice vermicelli. Mix the sauces well. Add rice vermicelli and mix it well so that the sauces cover vermicelli evenly. If you prefer not to marinate rice vermicelli, skip this step.
  3. Heat up vegetable oil on a skillet. It is better to use non-stick skillet since rice vermicelli might stick to the pan. Saute shallots and garlic until fragrant, about 1 min. Do not burn it.
  4. Add chicken or shrimp and cook until shrimp changes color or chicken is cooked. If using tofu, cook it until golden brown on each side.
  5. Push the chicken or shrimp to the side of the pan to give space to cook the egg. Add egg and scramble it until it is fully cooked. Make sure you break out the egg so that there is no very big chunk of egg.
  6. Add carrot, celery, and cabbage to the pan. Cook it until they are tender crisp.
  7. Add rice vermicelli to the pan and toss it with the other ingredients. If you marinate the rice vermicelli prior to adding vermicelli, only add more sweet soy sauce, soy sauce, and oyster sauce if needed. If you don't marinate the vermicelli, add sweet soy sauce, soy sauce, and oyster sauce and stir them well.
  8. Add salt and pepper. Taste it. Add more salt, pepper, sweet soy sauce, and soy sauce if needed.
  9. Add bean sprouts and green onion. Toss them well with the other ingredients.
  10. Turn off the heat. Serve it while it is still warm. You can serve it with fresh cucumber or pickled cucumber on the side. If you like it hot, add sambal oelek or sriracha on the side.


  • To make rice vermicelli more flavorful, you can marinate it with the soy sauce, oyster sauce, and sweet soy sauce for 30 min or more after cooking, rinsing, and draining rice vermicelli instead of putting the sauces while stir frying it and everything else on the pan.
  • If you use tofu, prepare tofu by draining, rinsing, and patting it dry with paper towel. After that, place it on top of strainer and place a container on top of the tofu. Leave it for 15 min or so. The weight of the container on top of the tofu will further drain more liquid off from the tofu. You can leave it longer than 15 min if you have more time and more liquid will be drawn out of it. After that, pat the tofu dry with paper towel and dice it into cubes.

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