There was a time in my childhood when we had this dish ONCE A WEEK! My mom was trying to perfect her version of lomi, which was (then) the all time favorite of my brother. To tell you the truth, after the first 6 weeks, I grew rather tired of it.
Fast forward to the present, where hubby chooses lomi at almost ALL the Chinese restaurants that we go to! And while lomi STILL does not make it to my favorite food list, seeing as hubby seems to adore the dish, here is my version...
How to make lomi -
500g Lomi noodles, parboiled, rinsed and drained
shallots (at least 6 pieces), sliced
4 slices of ginger
8 cloves garlic, minced
50 to 100 grams pork liver, sliced thinly
1 piece (100g approx) liempo, sliced into thin strips
1 tablespoon hebi (dried shrimps), rehydrated
8 pieces squid balls, halved
8 pieces small dried shitake mushrooms, rehydrated (4 large ones, halved)
about 1/4 cup dried "tenga ng daga" (woodear fungus), rehydrated, sliced into strips
1 medium carrot, julienned
about 6 cups chicken stock
1 stalk celery, sliced diagonally (celery leaves to be used too)
Baguio pechay or shredded cabbage
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
2 to 4 tablespoons soy sauce
shao xing wine (rice wine)
salt and pepper, to taste
cornstarch dispersed in water
2 to 3 eggs, beaten lightly
For the garnish:
1 to 2 stalks leeks, green part only, sliced diagonally
dash sesame oil
Heat oil over low heat and brown the shallots (keep heat on low). (Hubby says that the browned shallots are the secret ingredient to a truly yummy lomi.) When the shallots have browned, remove them from the oil and set the heat to high.
When the oil is very, very hot. Drop in the liver (careful, the oil may splatter) and saute only until half done; set aside.
Saute the ginger and garlic (add more oil, if necessary). Add pork belly strips; splash with shao xing wine and 1 tablespoon soy sauce. Add the dried shrimp (discard the soaking liquid). Stir fry a few seconds.
Add the quartered balls, mushrooms, woodear fungus, and carrot strips. (Feel free to add any other items like kikiam, squid, chicken strips, boiled quail eggs, etc.). Season with oyster sauce and soy sauce (use a light hand, it's always easier to add seasonings later but it's quite difficult to fix a too salty dish). Stir fry a few seconds then pour in the stock. Add the celery. Cook until boiling and let simmer a few minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the noodles. Adjust seasonings. Cook until simmering.
Adjust the broth to preferred "soupiness". Thicken with cornstarch water. Check seasonings again. Let simmer again. Then, while stirring constantly, slowly pour in beaten eggs, while stirring. Remove from heat immediately. Add back the half-cooked liver.
Before serving, garnish lomi with a few drops of sesame oil, leeks, cilantro and browned shallots. Serve with calamansi and fresh ground pepper on the side.
Perfect on a gloomy, rainy day...