Dan Dan Noodles

Dan Dan noodles are a spicy noodle dish traditionally featuring ground pork, chili oil and Szechuan pepper, a perfect midweek fakeaway.

Dan Dan noodles are a spicy noodle dish traditionally featuring ground pork of the much loved Sichuan cuisine, a perfect midweek fakeaway.

What Are Dan Dan Noodles?

For my US readers, Dan Dan Noodles probably need little or no introduction. However, for many of my European readers it is very much a lesser known recipe.

Dandan noodles or dandanmian is a Chinese dish from the Szechuan province.

It typically contains chili oil, ground pork, Szechuan pepper and some form of preserved vegetable, ordinarily mustard stems.

I find the dish very similar in many ways to kung pao chicken, which is definitely a favourite of mine.

It is another of those recipes that has been very much Westernised and there are thousands of versions hanging around.

This one is mine, it is a conglomeration of some recipes that claim to be authentic. Some recipes that do not claim to be authentic and most importantly, my tastebuds.

It is super quick to make, weighing in at just 25 minutes and packs some big old flavors!

Dan Dan noodles are a spicy noodle dish traditionally featuring ground pork of the much loved Sichuan cuisine, a perfect midweek fakeaway.

What is Sichuan or Szechuan Pepper?

Well, here you go… Szechuan pepper isn’t pepper! It comes from a completely different genus of plant than pepper.

It is the outer husk of a seed and when ground to a powder is one of the flavourings in 5 spice.

Unlike what are traditionally known as peppercorns in western cooking, Szechuan pepper is not spicy hot. 

It has a floral almost citrus flavour and a very characteristic ‘fizz’. Sorry I have no idea what else to call it! 

If it is overused it can also cause a sense of numbness in much the same way as cloves. It also has a wonderful affinity with chili!

I love Szechuan pepper. If you want to explore its uses beyond dan dan noodles you should check out my Szechuan shrimp or Szechuan beef recipes.

Dan Dan noodles are a spicy noodle dish traditionally featuring ground pork of the much loved Sichuan cuisine, a perfect midweek fakeaway.

The Peanut Butter.

Take care when cooking this dan dan noodles recipe to use unsweetened peanut butter.

There are hundreds of companies selling it out there so I am sure you can find it. 

Sweetened peanut butter will really mess with the balance of this recipe. To my mind not in an acceptable way, I did try it.

However, if you cannot buy it, fear not! You are buying raw peanuts anyway, so you can make your own.

Guess what? It is stupidly easy, toast your nuts (hehehehee) and then blend them.

Seriously that is it, check out my homemade peanut butter recipe for more details.

Dan Dan noodles are a spicy noodle dish traditionally featuring ground pork of the much loved Sichuan cuisine, a perfect midweek fakeaway.

What Pork Should I Use In Dan Dan Noodles?

Let’s talk briefly about ground meat.

Not all ground meat is equal, by its very nature it is an ideal opportunity for stores to get rid of crap that they can not sell.

Typically ground meat is labelled by its fat content alone. As a consumer, I would not accept that with any other meat. I also do not accept it for ground or minced meat.

I personally have a meat grinder at home. It is a cheap off brand machine that cost the equivalent of maybe 35 US Dollars. It is a tank and just keeps going.

But even if you do not have one find a butcher, they should be happy to grind your meat for you.

For this dan dan noodle recipe, I use blade or Boston butt for my US readers. I personally think that this recipe needs the fat content.

If you want something a little less fatty go for shoulder, avoid loin. It is too lean and will add no flavour to the dish, it will also cost you significantly more to taste of less!

Dan Dan noodles are a spicy noodle dish traditionally featuring ground pork of the much loved Sichuan cuisine, a perfect midweek fakeaway.

Dan Dan noodles are a spicy noodle dish traditionally featuring ground pork of the much loved Sichuan cuisine, a perfect midweek fakeaway.

Dan Dan Noodles

5 from 6 votes
Dan Dan noodles are a spicy noodle dish traditionally featuring ground pork, chili oil and Szechuan pepper, a perfect midweek fakeaway.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Chinese
Keyword Fakeaway Recipes, Ground Pork Recipes, Quick Noodle Recipes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 2
Calories 958kcal
Author Brian Jones

Ingredients

  • 250 g Ground Pork
  • 100 g Dried Egg Noodles
  • 25 g Ginger
  • 1 Clove Garlic
  • 1 Red Chili
  • 50 g Bamboo Shoots
  • 75 g Spring Onions
  • 1 Tbsp Szechuan Pepper Corns
  • 50 g Raw Peanuts
  • 1 Tbsp Hoisin Sauce
  • 1 Tbsp Crunchy Peanut Butter Unsweetened
  • 1 Tbsp Chili Bean Sauce
  • 2 Tbsp Shaoxing Wine
  • 1 Tbsp Light Soy Sauce
  • 1 Tbsp Dark Soy Sauce
  • 2 Tbsp Chili Oil
  • 1 Tbsp Cooking Oil

Instructions

  • Begin by cooking your noodles as per the instructions on the packet and then drain and refresh in cold water.
  • Whilst your noodles are cooking cut your ginger and chili (without seeds) into matchsticks.
  • Mash your garlic clove and grind your Szechuan pepper corns.
  • Slice your spring onions into rounds 2-3mm thick.
  • Mix together the soy sauces, chili bean sauce, Shaoxing wine and chili oil.
  • Heat your wok over a high heat and whilst it is heating toast off your peanuts.
  • When your peanuts are toasted remove them from the wok and return it to the heat.
  • Add the oil and when hot add the ginger, garlic and chili and stir-fry for 1 minute.
  • Then throw in the pork and cook for 7-8 minutes over a high heat until crispy.
  • Add in the Szechuan peppercorns and hoisin sauce and cook for a further minute.
  • Now add the bamboo shoots, most of the spring onions (retain some for garnish) and the sauce.
  • Finally add the noodles and the peanuts and cook until hot.
  • Serve sprinkled with some reserved spring onion
Dan Dan noodles are a spicy noodle dish traditionally featuring ground pork, chili oil and Szechuan pepper, a perfect midweek fakeaway. #fakeaway #chinesetakeaway #porkrecipe #spicyrecipes #quickrecipes #recipeideas #recipeoftheday

Readers Comments

14 thoughts on “Dan Dan Noodles”

  1. Hello Brian,
    Szechuan pepper is available and in my cupboard here in Thailand. What bamboo shoots did you use please ? Remember the canned crunchy ones we had in UK back in the day ? We have fresh ones growing on our land.
    By the way. I made the chicken lentil curry as you recommended. Delicious.

  2. Heard of them, but not sure I’ve ever had them. I’m inspired to make this now. I love Szechuan pepper, and i think “fizz” is the perfect word to describe it. Delicious all around!

  3. Oh Brian, youโ€™re singing to my heart! I love dan dan noodles, and your recipe looks absolutely amazing! I wish I had a big bowl of this right now! I canโ€™t wait to get back home (still traveling in Europe) and make this dish!

    • I feel your pain, finding some ingredients in Hungary is a challenge too and involves a trip to the capital city… Always a good excuse for a bit of a boozy foodie night out for us ๐Ÿ˜‰

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