Ninja cooking vs Kung Fu cooking (kung fu chow)

ninja cooking

I was cooking last night when my better half looked up from where she was sitting at the dining table.

Ling: How come you cook no sound one?
Me: I’m stealth! I’m not doing kung fu chow.
Ling: What kind of cooking is that then?
Me: Erm…ninja chow?

We had a good laugh over that. I live in a studio apartment so I don’t have a gas stove. I have an electric hob and I favor butter and EVOO so my cooking tends to be silent compared to the loud, cacophony of traditional Chinese cooking known as kung fu chow.

Kung fu chow literally translates to kung fu cooking. It’s a kind of wok martial arts that is often accompanied by bursts of flame, the clang of a metal frying utensil on the wok and the sizzle of hot oil coming into contact with water.

The high heat involved produces a lot of “wok hei” – the intense heat that caramelizes and gives noodles its flavor. The elusive wok hei cannot be achieved with a non-stick frying pan and a plastic spatula on a electric heating element with a high powered hood to suck all the smoke away, which is what I have in my condo.

Thus, I tend to do more Western style cooking but I did a pretty good Chinese meal last night – ninja style! smirk

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24 thoughts on “Ninja cooking vs Kung Fu cooking (kung fu chow)”

    • Yup! I even shoved everything around by closing the pressure pan and shaking it. :)

      It’s a trick my better half taught me – mixes everything up well.

  1. Er, I could be wrong but I’m pretty sure kungfu chow and fookkeen chow refer to they style of cooking – where kungfu chow tends to be with light in colour with starchy gravy and fookkeen chow is always dark because the Hokkien community loves dark soya sauce in their cooking.

    • OMG I think you’re right! :)

      Haha! I’ve always confused it coz I’m not from around here so I use the term very liberally!

      Interesting, cheers for the clarification!

      • FYI, the ‘kung fu’ in kung fu chow is not ‘kung fu’ (功夫) as in Chinese martial art. It’s actually
        ‘kong fu’ (广府) as in Cantonese

        It took me a while to realize it .. :)

        • Thanks for the clarification Pauline! :)

          I love how you write Chinese too!

          I though it’s the same word coz my Cantonese is really bad, but my Chinese is okay, I just can’t read or write but I can speak it well.

    • Haha! Yeah, coz kung fu got he, hah, and haiiiyahhhh sound! :)

      Mine is silent and tactical so I guess it’s called Ninja cooking.

    • I’ll love to go kung fu chow but I don’t have any place to do it! :)

      I want to do my own pork and chicken blood cake too, but I live in a studio apartment in a condo. I can’t have fry ups with woks and open fires (against the regulations – it’ll set off the smoke alarm).

      Haha! Okay, you can be a ninjarette then. :D

      • I am surprised that your Studio Apartments have such strict regulations for kitchen. I am guessing where about your apartment is. I am thinking of buying a HCP cooking like yours too.

        • Yeah, most condos don’t allow open flames if they have extensive fire detection systems. :)

          A HCP pan works pretty well in cooking, I must say. I saw a demo in Langkawi too, it’s very popular nowadays.

  2. I didn’t know that; I’m only aware that wok hei is necessary to produce that perfect plate of char koay teow.

    The tune of Kung Fu Fighting is stuck in my head: “Everybody, what’s Kung Fu Fighting?……” >.<

    • Yeah, you’re right, I think I mixed it all up in my head! :)

      OMG! I remember that song! I worked as a shareholder in a startup company for 4 years and hooked up a CCTV to a toy rat we got in Taiwan that sang the song!

      http://sixthseal.com/2005/05/everybody-loves-kung-fu-fighting/

      People could see the toy rat via remote IP-based CCTV (this was in 2005) and press a button on the website that I coded so they could remotely trigger the toy rat to sing that song – the I/O was hooked up to the toy rat wires that we stripped for the interactivity factor.

      It was funny, that was 8 years ago! I took it down several weeks later coz people would keep on pressing the virtual button on the website and the rat would sing that Kung Fu Fighting song. Annoyed the hell out of me. Goodness, time does fly, and good thing this blog is here to chronicle my life. :D

    • Haha! I thought kung fu chow is what they call the fiery wok style of cooking! :)

      I’m mistaken, it’s just another way to call a dish!

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