Vegan Dan Dan Noodles, noodles in a spicy sesame and chilli sauce topped with vegan mince, preserved vegetables and peanuts. A popular street food dish from Sichuan cuisine.
Ingredients of Note
Sichuan Peppercorns give the dish a numbing sensation with a citrusy flavour. They are a key ingredient in Sichuan cuisine. Either the red or green variety can be used. The green has a stronger citrus flavour than the red so if all you have is the green variety use half of what’s listed in the recipe.
Sui Mi Ya Cai is a key ingredient in Dan Dan Noodles. It’s a condiment made with preserved mustard greens from the Sichuan region in China. Sui Mi Ya Cai can be hard to find. My local Asian supermarket didn’t stock it. However, it’s quite easy to find online and is worth getting for the dish. If you can’t source it just leave it out of the dish.
Chinese chilli oil can be easily found online and in Asian supermarkets. However, we believe it’s worth the extra effort to make your own chilli oil. You can add the flavours you like and balance the spice level to your own preference. We have an easy recipe for homemade chilli oil you can follow.
Shaoxing wine is a rice wine that’s used extensively in Chinese cuisine. It adds a complex richness to dishes, similar to using white wine in western cuisines. Asian supermarkets usually stock more than one variety. Larger supermarkets can also stock a small range. One thing to watch out for is salt level. Shaoxing wine sometimes has added salt. If yours has salt consider adding less soy sauce to dishes.
Vegan Dan Dan Noodles
- 4 portions fresh wheat noodles
- 2 tablespoon tahini
- 4 teaspoons light soy sauce
- 2 teaspoon sugar
- 3 tablespoons chilli oil to taste
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 4 teaspoons Chinese black vinegar
- 6 tablespoons hot water
- 1 teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns
- 2 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 250 g vegan mince
- 40 g Sui Mi Ya Cai
- 2 teaspoon Shaoxing wine
- 2 teaspoon dark soy sauce
- ½ teaspoon Chinese 5 spice
- ¼ teaspoon white pepper
- ½ teaspoon sugar
- Pak Choi or other leafy green
- 4 tablespoons roasted peanuts crushed
- 4 spring onions thinly sliced
- 200 ml hot vegetable broth
- Chilli oil to taste
- Add all the ingredients for the sauce to a bowl and mix well, set aside.
- Prepare all the toppings so they are ready to assemble the dish. Once the noodles and mince are cooked then the dish should be assembled quickly. Steam the pak choi until tender, around 5 minutes. Crush the roasted peanuts and slice the spring onions.
- While the noodles are cooking Heat a pan over medium-high heat, once hot add the Sichuan peppercorns to the pan to lightly toast for 30 seconds. Remove them from the pan and grind in a mortar and pestle.
- Add the vegetable oil to the hot pan then fry the vegan mince until cooked and crispy. Once the mince is cooked add the rest of the ingredients and stir everything together. Continue to cook for a further minute then turn off the heat. Leave the mince topping in the pan to keep warm while you cook the noodles.
- Cook the noodles according to packet instructions. Usually 3-4 minutes for fresh noodles and 5-6 minutes for dried noodles. Watch not to overcook, you want the noodles to still have a bit of a bite.
- Once the noodles are cooked drain them. Now the dish can be assembled.
- Start by adding equal portions of the sauce to the bottom of serving bowls. Next top with the noodles. Place the pak choi around the edge of the bowl. Pour 50ml of the vegetable broth over the noodles and pak choi. Now the toppings can be added. Add a generous portion of the mince and top with the peanuts and spring onions. Finally drizzle with extra chilli oil then serve. The noodles should be mixed with the sauce and topping before eating.
- Shaoxing wine sometimes has added salt, if yours has salt consider adding less soy sauce to dishes.