Pastrami Pad Kee Mao (Drunken Noodles)


Tender wide rice noodles pick up color and peppery, meaty flavor when charred in a wok with thick slices of pastrami. This speedy, flavor-packed dish by Kris Yenbamroong of Night + Market cooks up quickly, so have all the ingredients at the ready before heating the wok.

Active Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
25 mins


  • 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon vegetable oil, divided

  • 8 ounces pastrami, trimmed and cut against the grain into 1/4-inch-thick slices

  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped garlic

  • ½ to 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh green or red Thai chiles

  • 1 cup sliced red bell pepper (1/4-inch-wide strips)

  • 2 medium jalapeños, stemmed, seeded, and cut lengthwise into 1/8-inch-wide strips (about 1/3 cup)

  • 1 pound fresh wide rice noodles (about 1/3 inch wide), noodles uncoiled and separated

  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar

  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce

  • 2 tablespoons black soy sauce

  • ½ cup packed fresh Thai basil leaves (about 1/2 ounce)

  • 2 teaspoons fish sauce

  • 1 teaspoon ground white pepper

  • Brined green peppercorns, for garnish (optional)


  1. Heat a wok over high until it begins to smoke; drizzle 1 teaspoon oil around wok edge. Add pastrami in a single layer around sides of wok. Cook until pastrami is warmed through and fat begins to render, about 1 minute per side. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to drain. Cut pastrami into bite-size (about 2-inch) pieces. Carefully wipe wok clean.

  2. Return wok to heat over high until it begins to smoke; add remaining 2 tablespoons oil. Add garlic and Thai chiles; cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, 10 to 15 seconds. Add bell pepper and jalapeños; cook, stirring constantly, until slightly softened, 1 minute to 1 minute and 30 seconds. Add noodles, sugar, oyster sauce, and black soy sauce; toss to evenly coat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until noodles are tender and peppers are softened, 2 to 4 minutes. Add pastrami pieces; cook, stirring often, until heated through, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Remove from heat. Stir in Thai basil, fish sauce, and white pepper. Garnish with green peppercorns, if desired. Serve immediately.


Robust red from the Loire Valley: 2019 Clos du Tue-Boeuf Pineau d'Aunis.

Related Articles