I’ve never had this Szechuan-inspired noodle dish but while surfing the net for something new and inspired to do with a pound of lean ground pork, I ran across this recipe. And it sounded delicious. Best of all, I had all the ingredients or, at least, close substitutions.
So, I cobbled together this recipe using common elements from 3 that I found. The result was well worth the time researching and making the dish. My tummy is full and I’m a happy camper. Even better, the meat sauce is a great make ahead so I only have to cook the noodles and pour the thawed topping over it. A few garnishes and you’re all set.
Before and After …
You may prefer to mix half of your toppings with the noodles and sesame oil in a large bowl and then top with the rest of the meat and garnishes. I’ve served the meat over fettuccine noodles and the rice noodles above. They were both great.
Dan Dan Noodles – serves 4
Cook 4 servings of noodles … rice (4 oz/113 gm per person), whole wheat ie spaghetti or fettuccine (85-100 gm per person), udon etc. Drain, rinse in cold water, drain well again. Drizzle a teaspoon or two of toasted sesame oil over the noodles to prevent sticking and for flavour, toss lightly to coat and divide among 4 bowls.
NOTE: You may want to wilt some fresh spinach in a saute pot as well and add it to the noodles for a healthier dish. I don’t have fresh green onions, only frozen in the freezer so I sprinkled several tbsp into the meat and mixed the onions through until they were thawed.
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 lb lean ground pork
2 tbsp fresh ginger, grated with juice
2 tbsp garlic black bean paste
1 tsp ground Szechuan peppercorns
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
pinch of sugar
2 tsp dark soy sauce
2 tsp black/Chinkiang vinegar
2 pinches of red pepper flakes
1/2 cup chicken stock
2-3 rounded tbsp tahini paste
2-3 sliced green onions (garnish)
Other optional garnishes include pickled mustard greens, roughly chopped cilantro and chopped dry roasted peanuts.
In a large saute pan, over medium-high heat, add the oil. When hot add the ground pork and brown for several minutes, breaking up the pork as much as possible.
Add the grated ginger and cook for another few minutes until the pork is lightly browned.
Add garlic bean paste, ground Szechuan peppercorns, both kinds of soy sauce, rice wine and black vinegar, sugar and red pepper flakes. Stir through and cook for several minutes.
Add the tahini paste and chicken stock and simmer for 5-7 minutes until the ‘sauce’ is as thick as desired. Taste and add a pinch more sugar if too hot.
Spoon the meat topping over the 4 bowls of noodles and sprinkle green onions on top.