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Dan Dan Noodle Recipe: Homecooking

Dan Dan Noodle Recipe: Homecooking
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  • Dan Dan Noodle Recipe: Homecooking

    Post #1 - June 15th, 2018, 8:22 pm
    Post #1 - June 15th, 2018, 8:22 pm Post #1 - June 15th, 2018, 8:22 pm
    I posted a picture of Dan Dan Noodle I made for dinner, was asked for a recipe. I've combined/tweaked elements of multiple recipes/cooks/techniques into my own spin. Also, I've come to realize there is nothing even close to a standard recipe.

    What follows is my current (6.18) Dan Dan Noodle. Pictures after recipe.

    Dan Dan Noodle
    Gary Wiviott Recipe as of 6.18

    Serving Size:
    2 generous meal portions

    Ingredients:

    8 oz ground beef (80/20)
    1 tablespoon neutral oil
    1 tablespoon minced garlic
    1 tablespoon minced ginger
    2 tablespoon crushed red pepper
    3 tablespoon Szechuan peppercorns
    1 tablespoon soy sauce
    1 tablespoon dark sesame oil
    2 tablespoons Chinkiang or Zhenjiang vinegar
    3 tablespoons sesame paste (tahini)
    3 tablespoons chili oil, homemade or Lao Gan Ma brand
    4 tablespoons Chinese preserved vegetable minced, rinsed
    1 pound fresh Chinese noodles
    5 scallions sliced into thin rounds
    1 cup water from boiling noodles, divided into 1/2 cup portions

    Directions:

    Toast, grind, combine, Szechuan peppercorns and crushed red pepper. This will make more than is needed for recipe. I like to add more as I eat.
    Saute beef with oil, breaking up as it cooks
    As beef cooks add 1/2 tablespoon, of ground toasted Szechuan peppercorn and crushed red pepper mix
    When beef is just cooked though add garlic and ginger.
    Saute until fragrant, about 45 seconds
    Add minced rinsed preserved veg
    Saute until fragrant, about 45 seconds
    Remove beef mixture to bowl, set aside

    Combine soy, sesame oil, vinegar, sesame paste, chili oil. Whisk, divide into two bowls, set aside.

    Cook fresh noodles in lightly salted boiling water until just done, drain, reserving 2 cups cooking water. (Recipe calls for 1 cup divided, its always good to have a little extra on hand)

    To Serve:

    Add 1/2 cup hot noodle boiling water to each bowl of soy, sesame oil, vinegar, sesame paste, chili oil. Whisk.
    Add 1/3 cooked noodle to each bowl, you will have leftover noodles.
    Top each bowl with 1/2 of ground beef mixture
    Top each bowl with chopped scallions
    Dust top of each bowl with scant teaspoon Szechuan peppercorn/hot pepper mix. Or to taste.
    Take picture, stir incorporating sauce from bottom and meat into noodle. Take another picture.
    Eat, enjoy. Repeat

    Notes:

    Dan Dan noodle is an infinitely variable dish, above is my version as of June 2018
    Feel free to:
    Top with roughly chopped peanuts, sesame seeds, additional chili oil
    Add additional noodle water if mix is too thick or you prefer a soupier version
    Add additional ground Szechuan peppercorn/crushed red pepper mix as needed while eating
    Add additional chili oil as needed while eating
    Substitute ground pork/chicken/lamb/turkey/duck/emu for ground beef. If using lean meat such as ground white meat chicken (blah) increase oil to 2 tablespoons
    If you wish to use full amount of noodle simply increase ingredients (aside from noodle) by 1/3rd
    May be made in one large bowl, mixed and divided into portions as part of multi course meal or starter.
    This is a moderately spicy version, though not over the top in deference to my wife. Feel free to adjust mala level up or down per individual taste

    Notes for next Dan Dan iteration:
    Add heaping tablespoon Pixian Doubanjiang to ground beef after adding ginger/garlic. This will make for a noticeably spicier Dan Dan Noodle

    DanDanRecipe6.jpg Completed Dan Dan Noodle after dusting with Szechuan peppercorn/dried hot pepper mix

    DanDanRecipe5.jpg Bowl on left is brides, she is not a fan of extra hot thus no additional Szechuan peppercorn/dried hot pepper mix

    DanDanRecipe4.jpg Sauce before adding hot noodle water

    DanDanRecipe2.jpg My favorite store bought chili oil, either pictured or Spicy Chili Crisp. Both same brand

    DanDanRecipe3.jpg Ingredients you may need a Chinese grocery to find

    DanDanIng6.jpg Zhenjiang vinegar, interchangeable with Chinkiang vinegar
    Sauce on the side, always, implied, axiomatic..........never a doubt, BBQ sauce without.

    Low & Slow
  • Post #2 - June 20th, 2018, 8:08 pm
    Post #2 - June 20th, 2018, 8:08 pm Post #2 - June 20th, 2018, 8:08 pm
    Another round of Dan Dan Noodle, and the beat goes on . . .

    DanDanLTH3.jpg Dan Dan Noodle.
    DanDanLTH1.jpg Mixed, ready to eat.

    DanDanLTH2.jpg Ducks in a row.

    DanDanLTH4.jpg Ducks in a Row
    Sauce on the side, always, implied, axiomatic..........never a doubt, BBQ sauce without.

    Low & Slow
  • Post #3 - June 20th, 2018, 9:33 pm
    Post #3 - June 20th, 2018, 9:33 pm Post #3 - June 20th, 2018, 9:33 pm
    Concurrent obsessions: French omelette and now Dan Dan Noodle.

    Keep it coming!
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #4 - June 20th, 2018, 9:36 pm
    Post #4 - June 20th, 2018, 9:36 pm Post #4 - June 20th, 2018, 9:36 pm
    I had written this before I saw Cathy's post.

    G Wiv wrote:Another round of Dan Dan Noodle, and the beat goes on . . .

    G Wiv wrote:French Omelette. Tasty, B- form factor. And the beat goes on . . .

    You should consider combining your current home-cooking obsessions and make a dan dan noodle omelette. It's not such a crazy idea: think of Andy's pad thai omelette (ATK and TAC). The more I think about it, the better it sounds. Get to work!!
  • Post #5 - June 21st, 2018, 7:19 am
    Post #5 - June 21st, 2018, 7:19 am Post #5 - June 21st, 2018, 7:19 am
    Cathy2 wrote:Concurrent obsessions: French omelette and now Dan Dan Noodle

    Dan Dan is more interest, French Omelette I'm committed/obsessed. Like the difference between a chicken and pig re breakfast. Chicken is involved, pig committed.

    Rene G wrote:You should consider combining your current home-cooking obsessions and make a dan dan noodle omelette. It's not such a crazy idea:

    Not crazy at all, thanks for the idea. In the next couple of days I'm going to blend an Omurice style omelette and Dan Dan noodle. For those not familiar with Omurice, I strongly suspect Rene G is, here's a short YouTube Video. Its pretty cool. ------> Link
    Sauce on the side, always, implied, axiomatic..........never a doubt, BBQ sauce without.

    Low & Slow
  • Post #6 - June 21st, 2018, 8:16 am
    Post #6 - June 21st, 2018, 8:16 am Post #6 - June 21st, 2018, 8:16 am
    Huh. I've got everything but the noodles in my pantry or freezer. This is going on the list for while SueF is out of town next week. I wonder if I can get a 1/3lb batch of noodles at the local stores -- I'm unlikely to go through a pound in a week. I could use spaghetti....
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #7 - June 21st, 2018, 8:42 am
    Post #7 - June 21st, 2018, 8:42 am Post #7 - June 21st, 2018, 8:42 am
    JoelF wrote:I'm unlikely to go through a pound in a week. I could use spaghetti....

    Fresh Chinese noodles are inexpensive, make pan fried noodle with the extra. They freeze ok (before cooking).

    If you do use spaghetti Serious Eats has a trick to give angel hair more bite/spring, add baking soda to the boiling water. -----> Serious Eats Link

    I have not tried this, I typically find use for extra Chinese noodle, and don't feel all that guilty if I toss .18c worth of leftover noodle if I don't make pan fried noodle as a dinner starch, or side for over easy eggs.

    How about a ramen burger with the leftover noodle. ----->Link

    Please post how it goes, I'd love to get some feedback on the recipe.
    Sauce on the side, always, implied, axiomatic..........never a doubt, BBQ sauce without.

    Low & Slow
  • Post #8 - June 21st, 2018, 8:46 am
    Post #8 - June 21st, 2018, 8:46 am Post #8 - June 21st, 2018, 8:46 am
    Delicious looking pictures. This reminds me very much of something my Taiwanese mom used to make: sesame pork noodles. Basically, you build the sesame and chili sauce in the bowl with the hot noodle water as you have done here. The difference is in the meat sauce; instead of a spicy Szechuan ground beef, it's a savory Taiwanese braised meat sauce made with pork belly, ground pork, shallots and soy sauce (https://thewoksoflife.com/2015/06/lu-ro ... -rice-bowl)

    I'll be sure to try out this Szechuan version as well.
  • Post #9 - June 21st, 2018, 4:58 pm
    Post #9 - June 21st, 2018, 4:58 pm Post #9 - June 21st, 2018, 4:58 pm
    And now I'm thinking about making a variation on Dan Dan with chopped smoked brisket. Certainly couldn't be bad.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #10 - June 27th, 2018, 6:17 pm
    Post #10 - June 27th, 2018, 6:17 pm Post #10 - June 27th, 2018, 6:17 pm
    Awesome dish. Ultimate weeknight dinner: with the pepper mix pre-made, ground beef, noodles (even spaghetti), and a bunch of Chinese pantry staples, you've got dinner on the table in minutes. The water/vinegar/oils/tahini mixture makes a perfectly viscous coating (I shudder to look at the fat grams -- but we shouldn't worry about that, the science is bunk, just worry about caloric intake).

    One suggestion for the recipe: The first step should say "Ventilate, toast, and grind" -- the guys from the Geneva Convention were by. I used Potrero Trading Post sun-dried XX-Hot crushed chiles, my current favorite.

    Spicier? Maybe, but I'm still sweating. I'm not sure the funkiness of the doban jan is needed. I didn't have a chile oil, I have a jar of fried chiles in oil, and went a little light on that not being certain how it would work. Pic on my Bachelor Chow thread.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #11 - June 28th, 2018, 5:44 am
    Post #11 - June 28th, 2018, 5:44 am Post #11 - June 28th, 2018, 5:44 am
    JoelF wrote:Awesome dish.

    Very nice, thanks for posting!

    Happy you liked the dish, great pics on your Bachelor Chow thread. Love the deli container marked MaLa!

    JoelF wrote:Potrero Trading Post sun-dried XX-Hot crushed chiles, my current favorite.

    Just looked these up, think I'll order a couple of types later in the day.

    JoelF wrote:Spicier? Maybe, but I'm still sweating.
    I consider dinner a win win when beads of perspiration form on my forehead. :)
    Sauce on the side, always, implied, axiomatic..........never a doubt, BBQ sauce without.

    Low & Slow
  • Post #12 - June 28th, 2018, 6:53 am
    Post #12 - June 28th, 2018, 6:53 am Post #12 - June 28th, 2018, 6:53 am
    G Wiv wrote:
    JoelF wrote:Spicier? Maybe, but I'm still sweating.
    I consider dinner a win win when beads of perspiration form on my forehead. :)

    In hindsight, I think it was the house more than the chiles -- I turned the AC back on shortly afterward.

    I'm not sure how much the preserved veg adds: A little crunch, but would other finely chopped veg serve as well? It's hardly a difficult ingredient, I'm fine including it. I'll probably chop up some peanuts for the leftovers, if for no other reason than it's a little small.

    I thought about browning up a bunch of ground beef to make this dish whenever I want... but it's such a simple dish, it's barely a time saver to pre-cook the beef. I can see a freezer case with "Gway-Lo Brand Dan Dan Noodles" with pouches of meat, sauce and fresh noodles, just add fresh scallions.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #13 - June 28th, 2018, 7:29 am
    Post #13 - June 28th, 2018, 7:29 am Post #13 - June 28th, 2018, 7:29 am
    JoelF wrote:I'm not sure how much the preserved veg adds: A little crunch, but would other finely chopped veg serve as well? It's hardly a difficult ingredient, I'm fine including it.
    I like the slightly salty mildly fermented pop and, as you mention, its an easy ingredient to find long as one has access to a Chinese grocery.

    JoelF wrote:I'll probably chop up some peanuts for the leftovers, if for no other reason than it's a little small.

    I often add chopped peanuts, see latest Dan Dan pics just above. Once again, there is no absolute Dan Dan recipe, variations abound most of which are tasty. Its not like Fuchsia Dunlop is going to come to your house and scold you. (though that would be amazing!)
    Sauce on the side, always, implied, axiomatic..........never a doubt, BBQ sauce without.

    Low & Slow
  • Post #14 - June 28th, 2018, 9:25 am
    Post #14 - June 28th, 2018, 9:25 am Post #14 - June 28th, 2018, 9:25 am
    G Wiv wrote:Once again, there is no absolute Dan Dan recipe, variations abound most of which are tasty. Its not like Fuchsia Dunlop is going to come to your house and scold you. (though that would be amazing!)

    Probably the biggest split is whether or not the sauce is creamy: Katy's version (where I first had it other than Japanese tantan mien) is almost brothy. I just surveyed a number of other recipes online, and the majority (but not all) are a creamier sauce, using either thinned out Chinese sesame paste (harder to find and less smooth than tahini), or peanut butter (from both Alton Brown, and Steven Raichlen via NYT). Some add greens such as bok choy.

    I get the feeling, though, that Dan Dan noodles are what Plato is eating in his cave every time someone orders sesame noodles at Noodles & Co.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #15 - June 28th, 2018, 9:40 am
    Post #15 - June 28th, 2018, 9:40 am Post #15 - June 28th, 2018, 9:40 am
    JoelF wrote:I get the feeling, though, that Dan Dan noodles are what Plato is eating in his cave every time someone orders sesame noodles at Noodles & Co.

    Banner quote!
  • Post #16 - July 6th, 2018, 8:53 pm
    Post #16 - July 6th, 2018, 8:53 pm Post #16 - July 6th, 2018, 8:53 pm
    DanDanLTH1.jpg Dan Dan Noodle = dinner
    Sauce on the side, always, implied, axiomatic..........never a doubt, BBQ sauce without.

    Low & Slow

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