|Yes, I roasted the peanuts and burnt some! :-(|
This version of Dan Dan noodles doesn't really resemble the traditional one which is covered in spicy chili sauce. I didn't want it to be too spicy (aka Americanized), so I tweaked it, of course.
A bit of trivia for you - did you know that dan dan is actually a shoulder pole? In the early days, peddlers would carry their wares (noodles, in this case) on a bamboo pole over their shoulders and sell them on the streets. This particular type of dish originated in Sichuan, and is still enjoyed there (and all over the world!) up to now.
What you need:
3 bundles of udon noodles
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 pound ground beef
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
3/4 cup beef broth
1 tablespoon chili oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
4 teaspoons tahini
1 teaspoon peppercorn
pinch of sugar
2 tablespoons roasted peanuts
2 tablespoons sliced green onions
What to do:
Cook noodles according to package directions. Drain and transfer to a large bowl of ice water. Let stand until cold. Drain well and set aside.
Heat canola oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add ground beef, season with salt and pepper and stir. Cook for about 2 minutes. Add ginger; continue cooking until beef is browned. Stir in beef broth, chili oil, vinegar, soy sauce, tahini, peppercorns and sugar.
Simmer until sauce thickens, about 7 minutes. Pour beef mixture over the noodles. Garnish with peanuts and green onions.
Tips, Tricks and Tweaks:
1. Traditional dan dan noodles use pork (use chicken stock with pork)
2. If using fresh ginger, use about 2 tablespoons.
3. Sichuan peppers would go great with this dish (I didn't have any so I used regular peppercorn).
4. Want it really spicy? Add more chili oil.