Xi’an Noodle Recipe (A.K.A. Da’ Rizzle)

I was walking down the night market in the Muslim quarter of Xi’an, China chasing down all the amazing smells and listening to the cacophony of “sizzle”. I didn’t do a lot of research on Xi’an food so the smells of skewered lamb basted with spicy, nutty sauces were a welcome surprise if not a little euphoric.

It was there that I first had “Nui Rou Jia Mo” (beef sandwich), “Biángbiáng” noodle, and “Dan Dan” noodles – those big fat rice noodles with all the glorious pastes, toppings and dressings. I was in heaven. Mind blown. “So”, I thought to myself. “This is real Chinese food”. Finally…

Many years and many trips later I decided to recreate that taste over here on the East Coast. And yes, like many a’ foodie my interest was reignited by a quick Xi’an famous foods noodle dish while lunching in NYC. I forgot how flavorful and unique that part of China could be.

That prompted me to not only have some but I also decided to make my own Xi’an menu here at home. I really couldn’t see me waiting in that lunch line ever again. New Yorkers know what I am talking about.

I also really didn’t really dig all the oil in some of these dishes so I reduced that and also intensified the flavors that I remember as being oh, so “Xi’an”. 好處, ma? This Xi’an noodle recipe is based on what I know about China but more specifically what I now about the rich and flavorful history of Xi’an.

Here we go. Enjoy the journey. It will be a delicious one.

Xi’an Noodle Sizzle Sauce

Saucy Xi’an Ingredients

Take these ingredients, mix them well and set aside.

  • 1 tbl tahini paste
  • 1 tbl tamari soy sauce
  • 4 garlic cloves sliced
  • 1 tbl brown sugar
  • 3 tbl Chinese black vinegar (hard to substitute this)
  • 1/2 tsp chili oil

Dry Xi’an Ingredients

Take these ingredients and toast them quickly.

  • A pinch of chili flakes
  • 1 tbl homemade five spice roasted (about 1/2 tsp of each > sichuan peppercorns, fennel seed, cinnamon bark, star anise, cloves)
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds

Culinary note: grinding and toasting (blooming) your own spices is a lot like making great coffee. You buy the raw goods, grind them and properly prepare them. Please don’t shortcut this process. It’s paramount for the flavor profile. I do, however, recommend some sort of spice grinder. I have spent way too many hours grinding by hand.

chinese five spice

Once there is a little aroma in the air, kill the heat. You only want to toast, not burn. This extracts some of the essential oils from the ingredients. Once the heat is off, add the saucy ingredients from above. Stir until married well. Let cool.

Now, I generally like to cook simple stuff with a lot of focus on quality and the marriage of flavors but you have to tip you hat off to the Xi’an people for brewing this up. It’s a culmination of a lot of different cultures and a lot of input over the years. Don’t forget, Xi’an was the first city in the world to reach one million inhabitants. Many were not Chinese.

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Xi’an Homemade Noodle

Now we need to make the noodle.

  • 1 cup rice flour
  • 1/2 cup tapioca starch (a little sweeter)
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • A little oil to keep things from sticking. Not really part of the recipe.

Make enough for some mistakes. Mistakes will happen. Don’t sweat it. You already have the paste/sauce so take your time and get the rice noodle right. It took me about 7-8 times doing this before the rice noodle had enough elasticity to present in front of people. There is no secret sauce here. You mix the ingredients up and then steam it to perfection.

I put about two ladle fulls of the Xi’an noodle mixture in a small pan for about 2-3 minutes in some sort of steamer set-up – I use my grill.

I take it out, cool to room temperature, paint it with some oil and then cut into strips. I repeat this process for another 1-2 batches depending on how many people are chomping at the bit.

Once you have the noodles you can either refrigerate it for a day or get straight to it and feed the masses with as a stir-fry.

Xi’an Stir-fry

Ingredients from above:

  • Xi’an Noodle Sizzle Sauce
  • Xi’an Homemade noodle
  • ~1lb. shaved lamb

I like to do a very quick stir-fry with the sauce and noodle. The portions / ratios are up to you. Do a test run. Taste the results.

Remember the noodles are painted/brushed with oil so no need to add tons more. Stir-fry that art work. In the last 30 seconds to a minute add the Xi’an noodle sauce. Remember it has sugar and that will eventually smoke/burn. Do this quick.

– xiăngshòu

Inspiration: http://xianfoods.com and of course my weeks spent eating all over Xi’an, China and living abroad.

Serves 3-4 people, Depending on belly.

Xi’an Noodle Recipe

Xi’an Noodle Recipe

Ingredients

  • Saucy Xi'an Ingredients
  • Take these ingredients, mix them well and set aside.
  • 1 tbl tahini paste
  • 1 tbl tamari soy sauce
  • 4 garlic cloves sliced
  • 1 tbl brown sugar
  • 3 tbl Chinese black vinegar (hard to substitute this)
  • 1/2 tsp chili oil
  • Culinary note: grinding and toasting (blooming) your own spices is a lot like making great coffee. You buy the raw goods, grind them and properly prepare them. Please don't shortcut this process. It's paramount for the flavor profile.
  • Dry Xi'an Ingredients
  • Take these ingredients and toast them quickly.
  • A pinch of chili flakes
  • 1 tbl homemade five spice roasted (about 1/2 tsp of each > sichuan peppercorns, fennel seed, cinnamon bark, star anise, cloves)
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds

Instructions

  1. If you have gotten this far, then you already know the instructions. Xi'an Noodle Recipe. Get it. Read above or contact me on https://instagram.com/thinkeatdrink/
http://www.thinkeatdrink.com/xian-noodle-recipe/