Dazzling and delicious Dan Dan chicken

Sichuan Dan Dan noodles with ground meat. (Pinterest pic)

Dan Dan Noodles, savoury and spicy Sichuan noodles served with ground meat make for a delicious meal at home. You can learn how to make it with this easy recipe.

Dan Dan Noodles, otherwise known as Dan Dan Mian, originate from Sichuan, China, and have since become popular all over the world.

Sichuan, also spelled Szechuan, is the birthplace of many Chinese dishes you love: kung pao chicken, kung pao shrimp and hot and sour soup being the best examples. Sichuan cooking is famous for its intense and deep flavours.

Sichuan Dan Dan Noodles are extremely flavourful, savoury, nutty, spicy, and slightly sharp tasting.

What does Dan Dan mean in Chinese?

Interesting fact: The original use of “Dan Dan” refers to the pole that vendors balanced on their shoulder to sell this dish to hungry customers on the street.

The dish was extremely affordable and the people gradually began to call the noodles “Dan Dan noodles” to refer to the pole.

The different kinds of Dan Dan noodles

Dan Dan Noodles can be served dry or with soup, and some variations call for sesame paste or peanut butter. This specific recipe is served dry.

These noodles are so good that there are regional variations in Japan and Korea. This recipe is absolutely delicious and authentic and you will love it.

The ground meat makes Sichuan Dan Dan noodles a hearty meal. (Pinterest pic)

Ingredients

8oz fresh noodles

6oz ground pork, beef, or chicken

1 pinch salt

1/2 teaspoon sesame oil

3 dashes white pepper

2 stalks scallions, cut into rounds

1 tablespoon oil

2 tablespoons ground peanuts for garnishing

fresh red chillies, sliced, for garnishing

Chilli oil

5 tablespoons oil

2 tablespoons dried chilli flakes

1/2 tablespoon Sichuan peppercorn

Sauce

2 tablespoons Ponzu sauce

2 tablespoons Oigatsuo Tsuyu Soup Base, Green Label – No MSG

2 tablespoons Goma Shabu, Sesame Sauce

1 tablespoon Honteri Mirin

1/2 teaspoon sesame oil

1 tablespoon soy sauce

2 teaspoons sugar

2 cloves garlic, peeled and very finely minced

1/2 tablespoon white sesame seeds

Chopped scallion is the best garnishing for Dan Dan Mian. (Pinterest pic)

Recipe

Bring a pot of water to boil. Cook the fresh noodles until al dente. Drain, briefly rinse with cold water and set aside.

Mix the ground pork with salt, sesame oil, white pepper, and half of the chopped scallion. Set aside. Leave the other half of the scallion for garnishing.

Prepare the chilli oil first by heating up a small pot on high heat. Add the oil and heat up until it becomes very hot. Turn off the heat and add the red chilli flakes and Sichuan peppercorns into the oil.

Cover the pot with its lid immediately as the oil will splatter. Wait for 5 minutes before removing the lid. Filter the chilli oil.

Prepare the sauce by combining the chilli oil and all the ingredients for the sauce together. Whisk it to mix well.

Transfer the noodles into the sauce pan, stir to combine well with the sauce.

To cook the ground pork, add 1 tablespoon of oil into a frying pan. When the oil is heated, add the ground pork into the pan and stir continuously to break up any lumps.

Cook for 2-3 minutes until the ground pork is cooked. Transfer the ground pork to the Dan Dan Mian and mix well.

Transfer the noodles into two bowls. Top with some ground peanuts, scallions, and fresh red chillies. Serve immediately.

Recipe notes

If you don’t like the flavour and tingly sensation of Sichuan peppercorn, you can omit it from the chilli oil. You can buy store-bought red chilli oil or “La Yu” for this recipe. Just use 4 tablespoons or adjust according to your taste.

This article first appeared in rasamalaysia.com

Low Bee Yinn is a food blogger and cookbook author.