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Cold Noodles w/ Szechuan v. Dan Dan Mein


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I'm looking for recipes for Dan Dan Noodles I didn't find a thread (I searched) where this was the topic. Any other hot & spicy noodle dishes would be appreciated as well.

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I'm looking for recipes for Dan Dan Noodles I didn't find a thread (I searched) where this was the topic. Any other hot & spicy noodle dishes would be appreciated as well.

I can tell you how I make it. Normally I would not measure any of these things, but I know that doesn't help, so I'll try to put some measurements to ingredients.

2 tsp soy sauce

a dash of sugar

2 tsp peanut butter, mixed with a little hot water you used for boiling the noodle/pasta (just to thin it)

1/2 tsp of white vinegar

1/2 tsp of chili oil

(optional) Hua-jiao powder (szechwan peppercorn powder)

1 TSP crushed peanuts

1 TSP chopped scallion

mix everything, and dumped boiled/drained noodle/pasta (if you can't get Chinese noodle, spaghetti or vermicelli) into bowl with sauce and toss.

It's so easy and good.

"Mom, why can't you cook like the iron chef?"
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Doesn't Dan Dan Mian usually contain ground pork?

Peanut butter... now thats an interesting addition. I guess yours is more like the standard peanut noodles you get at chinese takeout places?

Jason Perlow

Co-Founder, The Society for Culinary Arts & Letters

offthebroiler.com - Food Blog | View my food photos on Instagram

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There are many, different recipes for dan dan noodles, and they do vary by region across China, Taiwan, and other places in Asia with Chinese populations.

Dan dan noodles are just noodles that were carried in buckets hung by the handles on the ends of a pole balanced across the upper back and shoulders of workers. So, you see, traditionally they were a dish made using just whatever ingredients one had on hand. Some use meat; some use sesame paste. The seasonings vary a lot. It's not a fancy dish, by any means.

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browniebaker: Dan dan noodles  Some use meat; some use sesame paste. The seasonings vary a lot. It's not a fancy dish, by any means.

The sesame paste you mentioned, is that the same as tahini?

I bought a jar for something and it's still sitting in my fridge. :hmmm:

Dejah

www.hillmanweb.com

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I agree peanut butter sounds a little "unauthentic", but since it goes very well with the crushed peanuts, which is an authentic part of this dish (some recipes would probably say "peanut powder", which also can be bought), and so easily found (i.e. in your fridge), and...if you use the crunchy kind you don't even have to add peanuts, like Ben stated...

Sesame paste is availalbe at any Chinese market. I must be spoiled living in LA. Please come visit us and I'll give anyone a jar. :laugh:

I have no idea why but I think Szechwan peppercorn is "illegal" in US. Confession: I have brought little bags in my deep suitcase pocket. I do not think it harms anyone that I am getting the nice "ma" flavor (as in Ma Po Tofu) and only consuming this among family members. They sell the powder, but to get real rich flavor you need to "dry-fry" the peppercorns and then crush them. Just as an aside.

Dan-dan noodle is really kind of like a P & J sandwich...we try to make it really simple.

Oh, I forgot to say last time, a little crushed garlic can be nice too, but you will stink, so it's optional. Sesame oil is nice too. I think I usually add a few drops.

edited for typo

Edited by TurtleMeng (log)
"Mom, why can't you cook like the iron chef?"
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I have no idea why but I think Szechwan peppercorn is "illegal" in US.  edited for typo

Szechwan/Sichuan peppercorns were illegal to import into the USA since 1968 because they can carry citrus canker. However, the ban was not enforced until about 3 years ago when citrus canker began to affect Florida's orange crops.

In 2004, the U.S. Department of Agriculture lifted the ban for Sichuan peppercorns that are heat-treated (heated to at least 140F for at least 10 minutes). Importers must present such documentation to import the peppercorns.

SuzySushi

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Doesn't Dan Dan Mian usually contain ground pork?

Peanut butter... now thats an interesting addition. I guess yours is more like the standard peanut noodles you get at chinese takeout places?

The version at Wu Liang Ye contains minced pork. Of course, they bill theirs as "Dan Dan Noodles with Roasted Chili Viniagrette", something that WLY does quite often.

Spicy, redolent of Sichuan peppercorns, and oh so good. Just had some today and noticed they use quite a bit of garlic too.

Soba

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Doesn't Dan Dan Mian usually contain ground pork?

Peanut butter... now thats an interesting addition. I guess yours is more like the standard peanut noodles you get at chinese takeout places?

The version at Wu Liang Ye contains minced pork. Of course, they bill theirs as "Dan Dan Noodles with Roasted Chili Viniagrette", something that WLY does quite often.

Spicy, redolent of Sichuan peppercorns, and oh so good. Just had some today and noticed they use quite a bit of garlic too.

Soba

I'm pretty sure the one at Grand Sichuan International Midtown is also with minced pork. I've had both the Wu Liang Ye and GSI versions, both are very good.

Jason Perlow

Co-Founder, The Society for Culinary Arts & Letters

offthebroiler.com - Food Blog | View my food photos on Instagram

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hmm...you learn something new all the time, hehe...To me, dan dan mian was always a Sichuan dish, no peanut butter going anywhere near. Always would include minced pork and always hot, in a fire red broth...

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I make them with a mix of sesame paste AND a little peanut butter. I can buy the sesame paste at the only oriental foods store in my town of Longmont, CO (population about 60,000), so I would think any oriental foods store should carry it. I also use minced pork, and I sprinkle a little ground Sichuan peppercorn on top (my sister brought a lifetime supply back from China a couple of months ago - it's in my freezer in hopes of preserving the "zing"). It's one of my favorite dishes, but I don't make it very often because my kids won't touch it.

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  • 7 months later...

Yup. Same thing. But Dan Dan Mian is not always served cold, I've had it hot (well, warm) as well.

There are a few variations of this dish that use different types of noodles (like the fat translucent mungbean noodles that are brick shaped -- Grand Sichuan International Midtown I think uses a thinner noodle for Dan Dan and they also use the mungbean noodles for a slightly different dish but without the pork) but all use sichuan fire oil and a lot of Sichuan Peppercorn.

Jason Perlow

Co-Founder, The Society for Culinary Arts & Letters

offthebroiler.com - Food Blog | View my food photos on Instagram

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I always thought they were the same, but I noticed that GSI Midtown had them both listed on the menu.

Well, order them both and take photos.

Good idea, Jason. And, could you include the recipes? :wink:

Dejah

www.hillmanweb.com

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