As noodle dishes go, dandan noodles have to be up there with the best of them. There's just something so heart-warming about this noodle-y delight, with crisp minced pork, a ya cai sauce and the fiery tones of chilli oil working together in perfect harmony.
And Shang Pu Noodles, Chilli Fagara and Shanghai Lane get that harmony too – there's no doubt that the chefs here all know how to prepare a bowl of dandan noodles that hits just the right note every time.
The secret to delicious noodles
There's two things that are super important when it comes to whipping up a really good bowl of dandan noodles – the sauce and the pork. The first gets its magic from ya cai – these pickled mustard greens are a staple of Sichuan cuisine, and their unforgettable tones give a great depth of flavour to the noodles.
And we can't forget the pork. It's super important that the pork is finely minced here, so much so that some chefs even choose to chop the meat by hand for the perfect texture. Then it's fried up till dry to create that lovely crispy finish that we all know and love.
A memorable backstory
As with many culinary superstars, dandan noodles have a humble beginning. Originally an early kind of street food, the noodles were sold by moving street vendors from a dan dan carrying pole – hence the name. Nowadays, you'll find dandan noodles just about everywhere, with each modern version building on those humble origins.The dish is also super versatile, meaning that chefs all over the world jazz it up with just about any ingredient out there.
And one such contemporary twist can be found at Chilli Fagara. Here, the noodles and traditional base are given a new lease of life with the special in-house peanut soup. The nutty flavour works great with this dish, and it'll soon have you coming back for more.
At Shang Pu, they take a different route. You'll find your dandan noodles paired with succulent pork ribs, infusing the dish with their rich, punchy flavours. Meanwhile, over at Shanghai Lane this theme is taken further – there are all sorts as your noodle's companions here. While the Pork & Pak Choy Dumplings is a great option, we love the Stewed Beef Shank version, the meat slow cooked for that falling apart texture that we all know and love.
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