P.F. Chang's China Bistro, Inc.'s 40-plus restaurant chain, operating in 19 states, owes much of its success to founder Paul Fleming's unique idea of pairing oriental cuisine with American-style service. At the outset, when he opened the first of the restaurants in Scottsdale, Arizona, Fleming broke with the traditional Chinese restaurant format. With his collaborator, chef Philip Chiang, he devised a comparatively limited menu that featured far fewer dishes than the menus of typical, full-service, Chinese restaurants. Incorporating an American steak house dining style and a formidable selection of wines and cheeses, P.F. Chang's offers such additional oriental restaurant anomalies as espresso and cappuccino. Although P.F. Chang's China Bistros are stylish in decor, displaying motifs from the Ming and T'ang Dynasties and hand-painted murals, the dishes are moderately priced, partly because one of Fleming's aims was to provide high quality but affordable Chinese food for "the masses."




Zodiac Noodles

P.F. Chang's China Bistro Copycat Recipe

Serves 2

3 ounces pork loin, cut into this strips
5 ounces rice vermicelli
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
2 teaspoons  vegetable oil
8 chili pods
1 teaspoon garlic
1 1/2 ounces  ham
2 green onions, diced
1/4 cup sliced cabbage, cut into thin strips
1/4 cup shiitake mushroom, sliced
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon oyster sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil

Soak vermicelli in very hot water for 1 hour.Bring a pot of water to a boil, add Vermicelli and boil for one minute. Rinse under warm water for one minute, drain well then mix with 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil.Heat a wok over high heat until it begins to smoke. Add vegetable oil, then chili pods and pork. Stir fry until pork is almost done. Add garlic, ham, green onion, cabbage and mushrooms. Stir for 10 to 15 seconds. Add vermicelli, salt, soy sauce oyster sauce, sugar and sesame oil. Stir fry until all ingredients are mixed well.

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