Recipe: Lamb biang biang noodles 2023

December 1, 2022 by No Comments

Noodles fried in lamb fat at the end of jingisukan (literally, Ghengis Khan) mutton barbecues are usually considered just a part of the cleanup process. To me, however, they’re the star of the show. And after watching the Oscar-nominated “Drive My Car” recently, I was inspired to make a meal merging Japanese, Chinese and my own Kiwi elements.

The kanji for 'biang'

The kanji for ‘biang’Homemade noodles are daunting, but not that difficult. If you can embrace the idea that inconsistency in width is a good thing, then the pressure is off. Lose yourself in the meditative process. Biang biang hand-pulled noodles from Shanxi are simple and delicious. The word “biang” also shoulders one of the highest stroke counts for a kanji, 56 — twice in a row! I’m not often thankful for katakana, but in this case, it’s a godsend.

Noodles, then toppings, and finally hot fat on top to finish the cooking process right in the serving bowl — what follows is my spin on a classic Xian dish, with Hokkaido lamb and classic herbs to cut the fat. Store-bought noodles work, but you’d be missing out.

Recipe:

Serves 2

Prep: 30 mins. + resting overnight

Cook: 20 mins.

Ingredients:

  • 170 milliliters water
  • 2 grams salt
  • 300 grams of all-purpose flour, sifted
  • 20 milliliters of rice bran oil (to coat)
  • 4 tablespoons rice bran oil (to fry)
  • 2 tablespoons crispy chili oil
  • 200 grams of minced lamb (or your favorite alternative)
  • 2 teaspoons sansho pepper powder
  • 2 large cloves garlic, crushed or grated
  • 1 bunch of mint leaves, picked and chopped
  • 1 small bunch (100 grams) of green onions, finely sliced
  • 2 teaspoons tamari
  • 2 teaspoons black rice vinegar

Directions:

  1. The day prior to cooking, dissolve the salt in the water and mix it with flour until a dough forms. Refrigerate the dough for an hour in a covered container, take it out and knead it again until smooth.
  2. Cut the dough into 12 strips and, using a brush, coat it with the 20 ml rice bran oil. Return it to the same container and leave it covered in the fridge overnight.
  3. On cooking day, put a large pot of water on to boil. Scoop a ladle of hot water into your serving bowls to warm them for later.
  4. Flatten each dough strip and cut them lengthwise into three. Grab each end of the noodle and pull them by stretching your arms out as far as you can and then drop them straight into the boiling water. Working quickly, repeat this step for all the noodles and boil them for roughly two minutes once all are in the pot.
  5. Discard the warm water that was in your serving bowls, fish the noodles out of the boiling water with a sieve, and split them between the two bowls.
  6. Top each bowl of noodles first with the green onions, then sprinkle the sansho pepper and crispy chili oil on top before adding the mint and garlic.
  7. Heat the four tablespoons of rice bran oil in a small pot to 220 degrees Celsius. Fry the minced lamb and, when it’s completely cooked and starts to crisp, pour half of the oil into each bowl (be careful not to splash yourself), followed by the lamb.
  8. Mix the tamari and vinegar together in a small bowl and add half of the mixture to each bowl of noodles. Mix the bowl well before eating.

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