I have a great tasty inexpensive and in-no-way-whatsoever-even-remotely-authentic “lo mein” recipe, if you’d like it:
.5 to 1 lb. ground or finely sliced pork
Ginger and garlic to taste (usually I start with about an inch chunk of ginger, minced, and 3 or 4 garlic cloves.)
Two packages ramen noodles, any flavor (I like “Oriental” or “Pork” the best)
1/2 a bag of frozen peas
Coupla carrots, peeled and jullienned, or just cut up small
1 can of water chestnuts, if you’re into such things
1 head romaine lettuce, shredded. Yes, that’s right, you heard me. See above re: in-no-way-whatsoever-even-remotely-authentic
You can add in any other “Chinese” vegetables you like: snowpeas, bamboo shoots, bean sprouts, baby corn, straw mushrooms (or white mushrooms). Since I usually use this to feed a camp, I go cheap.
So you brown your pork with the ginger in your largest skillet over med-high heat. (Forget the wok. Woks are useless on a home stove, they just don’t get hot enough.) When the meat is mostly not-pink, add in the garlic. (If you put the garlic in at the start, it will burn by the time the meat is done.) When the meat is no longer pink, drain off any fat and add the noodles, slightly broken, the veggies (except the lettuce), one of the seasoning packets from the ramen and a cup or so of water. Stir, and then cover with the lettuce. Yes, I know it’s really full. Don’t worry about it. Put a lid on it, turn the heat to low and walk away for about 10 minutes - maybe check once to make sure there’s enough liquid in there so things don’t burn on the bottom. Come back and stir in the now-wilted lettuce. Add soy sauce to taste. Add some or all of the second seasoning packet if you want. If not, save it for adding to a pot of rice later on in the week.
Enjoy the tastiness with reckless abandon, ignoring the jeers of those who think you’re taking inauthenticism too far.