Through the blogging world, I got to know many talented food bloggers. Xiaolu from 6 Bittersweets is one of them! A while ago, I stumbled upon her blog, her food look absolutely delicious and the photos are just pretty! By looking at them just make my mouth water! Blogging is just fantastic! Today, I am glad that Xiaolu is on my blog to share with us a very special dish, which I instantly want to taste and give it a go! Please welcome Xiaolu!
Years ago when I first stumbled upon Leemei’s blog, My Cooking Hut, I was blown away by the gorgeous photography and mouthwatering French and Asian recipes. Naturally I’ve been a dedicated follower ever since. You can imagine then how surprised and excited I was to receive her recent invitation to prepare a guest post. Immediately I thought to share a recently rediscovered favorite from my childhood in China: Liang Fen 凉粉 (Cold Mung Bean Noodles). Thank you so much, Leemei, for letting me contribute to your lovely blog!
After emigrating from China to the United States at the age of 6, I retained few memories of my early years in China. But there was one exception. I recalled every bit of the delicious food, from stinky tofu to deep-fried ginger lotus root balls to cold noodles with an addictive spicy sauce. The vibrant tastes and textures of authentic Chinese food thankfully remained clear in my mind no matter how many bad experiences I had with Americanized “Chinese” food. Now that I’ve grown up to cook for myself and Asian ingredients are more available around the world, I’m delighted to recreate this refreshing noodle dish for you.
Liang fen is a dish especially popular in Northern China during the summertime. Although I translate it as “noodles,” it’s really a chilled jelly made from mung bean starch that’s sliced into noodle-like strips. Right before serving, the strips are tossed with a spicy sauce.
Depending on the region in China, this sauce may include soy sauce, vinegar, minced garlic and ginger, ground Szechuan peppercorn, sesame paste, chili oil, daikon radish, and peanuts. The noodles themselves have only a mild flavor. But their cool temperature and slippery texture make them the perfect match for a spicy sauce that even makes your tongue tingle, thanks to the Szechuan peppercorn. All combined, these components make for a fun, flavorful eating experience. I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as we do!
XIAOLU’S NOTES: Please note the uncut jelly needs to chill for several hours and plan accordingly. You can make the jelly up to 1 day ahead. The Szechuan pepper oil will keep, covered and chilled, for 3 months. Bring to room temperature before using.