Dan Dan Noodles-Classic Sichuan dish
Dan Dan Noodles (or Noodles, Sichuan Style/dàn dàn miàn 担担面) is another classic Sichuan dish that one shouldn’t miss out when you’re in Chengdu. This sack is a kind of hot-spiced noodles or spicy peanut noodles.It is favored with a sauce containing dried shrimp, shredded preserved vegetables,crushed roasted peanuts, sesame seeds, chilli oil,soy sauce,vinegar and garlic. The one thing you’ll find in every recipe for Dan Dan Noodles is a spicy sauce that includes sesame paste (peanut butter makes a handy substitute) and hot chili oil. Most include roasted Szechuan peppercorn, although this is sometimes left out of the sauce and served as a garnish instead.
Dan Dan noodles can be found at many street food joints all over Chengdu. Approximately RMB5 per bowl.
Origin of Dan Dan Noodles
Dandan refers to shoulder poles（dan dan）. In the earliest time when a noodle peddler shoulder his pole, he usually carried two baskets on either side as he walked along streets. The baskets contained his noodles and sauce. He sold his noodles to passers-by and residents who lived on the streets. His noodles cost almost nothing, and gradually local people called it Dandan Noodle.
How to make Dan Dan Noodles?
(This recipe for Dan Dan Noodles serves 4 to 6)
3 tablespoons sesame paste or peanut butter
1 1/2 tablespoons Asian sesame oil
3 tablespoons black rice vinegar
2 tablespoons light soy sauce
1 1/2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 – 1 1/2 teaspoons roasted Szechuan peppercorn*
3 teaspoons hot chili oil**
1 teaspoon granulated sugar, optional
1/4 cup chicken broth
12 ounces dried Chinese noodles or pasta
1/3 cup chopped roasted peanuts, or as needed
4 spring onions (green onions) finely chopped
Step 1. Combine the Sauce Ingredients
In a small mixing bowl, add the sauce ingredients, starting with the sesame paste or peanut butter, sesame oil and black rice vinegar, whisking to mix together. Continue whisking as you add in the remaining ingredients.
Step 2. Prepare the Garnish
Chop the roast peanuts (you can use a food processor or do it the old fashioned way with a mortar and pestle). Finely chop the spring onions.Other possible garnishes are toasted sesame seeds, which will enhance the nutty flavor of the dish. You can also leave the roasted Szechuan peppercorn out of the sauce and serve as a condiment or sprinkle over the noodles.
Step 3.Cook the Noodles
Cook the dried noodles according to the package directions. Drain in a colander. (Do not rinse unless the package directions say to do so).
Step 4.Sauce the Noodles
Place the noodles in a large (preferably warm) bowl. Whisk the sauce again and then stir it into the noodles.
Step 5.Serve the Dan Dan Noodles
Dish the noodles into individual bowls and garnish with the chopped spring onion and peanuts.
1.Szechuan peppercorn adds a sharp bite to the sauce. How much to use comes down to personal preference. If you’re unsure, start with 1/2 teaspoon and do a taste test. You can also leave it out of the sauce altogether and serve on the side as a condiment, allowing everyone to help themselves.
2.To turn this into a vegetarian main dish, add an assortment of raw vegetables, such as mung bean sprouts and sliced carrot.