Sunday, December 23, 2012

Breakfast this morning: Liangpi noodles (recipe)

Liangpi noodles

The Chinese province of Shaanxi is famous for a variety of dishes, such as cumin lamb burger, lamb pao mo soup and pulled biang biang noodles. One other traditional and beloved dish is Liangpi noodles.
Liangpi noodles are broad flat noodles traditionally made of rice pr wheat flour and steamed. It is a dish served in a sauce that hits every possible category of flavor and can be served hot or cold. Cold liangpi taste smooth and delicate, while hot liangpi is soft and chewy.

Cold liangpi noodles with cumin lamb

I made cold liangpi noodles served with cumin lamb. his noodle dish is from the city of Xi'an, Shaanxi province, China. Xi'an, as a starting point of the silk road is famous for its fusion of middle eastern and Chinese cuisine. Shaanxi is also known for its sour taste, coming from vinegar. For this dish, you have to use a mature black vinegar (as mentioned in the recipe)

Use the right vinegar

If you are still looking for a good bottle of Chinese vinegar I would recommend you lao chencu for a mature vinegar (from Shaanxi).  
* With regard to other vinegars: Xiangcu if you are looking for a fragrant vinegar ( Zhejiang Province). For red vinegar you'd best choose hongqu mice (red vinegar(Fujian) and if you need a bran vinegar I could recommend baoning cu ( Sichuan).  Some good brands are Dong Hu, Mei He JU, or Yi Yuan Qing. Make sure you buy a good bottle as the cheaper ones may contain excessive chemicals.


List of ingredients

Main ingredients
200 g of dried broad rice noodles, or 440 g of fresh broad wheat flour noodles
100 g of lean lamb
100 g of bean sprouts

Marinade ingredients
1/2 tsp light soy sauce
1/2 tsp Shaoxing wine
1/2 tsp wheat starch

Sauce ingredients
1 tsp chopped ginger
2 tsp chopped garlic
1/4 tsp rock sugar
1/4 tsp of salt
2 tbs of soy sauce
1 tbs of mature black vinegar
3/4 cup of stock (mutton, pork or chicken)

1 tbs of cumin
1 large tbs of red chili powder
1/2 cup of oil

Sesame oil

Method of preparation

Preparing the noodles

Choose broad type of rice noodles or prepare broad wheat flour noodles, as I did. For the wheat flour noodles use 200 g of wheat flour, take a cupe of hot water and add a tsp of lye. Mix this carefully through the dough (if it's to hot, use a spoon first or wait a few minutes).

Let the dough rest for 30 minutes.

Dust your working table with wheat or corn starch. Roll out you dough. Dust the sheets and fold them and cut them into broad noodles. More about dough folding and cutting can be read here.

Preparing the lamb

Marinate 100 g lean lamb in tsp of wheat starch, 1 tsp of Shaoxing wine, 1 tsp of soy sauce and a tbs of water.

Preparing the sauce

Chop the ginger and garlic very finely. Put it into a bowl. Add 2 tbs of light soy sauce, 1 tbs of mature vinegar, 1/4 tsp of rock sugar, 1/4 tsp of salt and 3/4 cup of stock. Set aside.

Chop the scallion. Set aside.

Rinse the bean sprouts under cold water. Set aside.

Prepare for noodle cooking

Bring a large pan of water to boil, add salt. When the water starts to boil, toss in the noodles. Remove them from the water as soon as they are ready. Read more about noodle cooking here.
Use the water to blanch the bean sprouts. Serve on top of the noodles.


Heat one cup of peanut or soy oil. Add the lamb meat, fry for 30 seconds. Add a tbsp of cumin and a large tbs of chili powder, fry another 30 seconds. Add the prepared sauce and immediately turn of the heat.

Pour over the noodles and garnish with scallions and sesame oil.

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