If you love noodles, you have probably heard about Chinese noodles. One of the delicious noodles that many people in this country enjoy is Lanzhou noodles. It is popular in both Chinese households and restaurants.
The local government even imposes price controls on these noodles to prevent restaurants from selling them at a very high price so that everyone can enjoy them. This article will inform you more about Lanzhou noodles, including their history, what they are made of and how to prepare them. Read on!
Lanzhou beef noodle history
This meal has an extensive history. The Hui people who lived in northwest China were the first people to prepare this meal. It was common during the Tang dynasty between 618 and 907 AD. The meal was named after a city called Lanzhou City, which was located in the Gansu Province since this is where it originated.
The Hui people came up with beef noodle soup that suited their Muslim diet. Since they did not consume pork, the Hui people used mutton and beef while preparing Lanzhou noodles. This meal consisted of freshly prepared noodles with mutton or beef served with some broth. Lanzhou noodles were a crucial element of the local food culture.
Ma Boaz, a Muslim Chef, was the original creator of the Lanzhou noodles. Though Ma was poor, he was hardworking and made ends meet by cooking Lanzhou noodles in his home and selling them to hungry customers on Lanzhou streets. His life changed when he started serving these noodles in a stock-rich broth made from lamb and beef livers.
Since many customers liked this meal, he gained more customers and even managed to open a restaurant. Ma started giving customers free broth while they waited for the beef noodles to attract more people.
After some time, the Chinese in different regions started learning how to prepare beef noodle soup. The preparation of Lanzhou noodles has kept on changing over time since their introduction. Over time, almost all restaurants in local regions in China started serving this meal. According to the traditions, the Hui people took Lanzhou noodles for breakfast.
What is Lanzhou noodles made of
Though the recipe of Lanzhou noodles differs based on the region, it is made of certain essential elements. Some of them include the following.
- Coriander leaves– This meal is made up of fresh coriander leaves and bright green garlic shoots.
- Chili oil– It also contains deep red oil that floats on the surface.
- Noodles-This is the main element in the dish. It is made of yellow noodles that should come from high-quality wheat. These are referred to as Shuang.
- Chinese radish– This element should be pale white. The Chinese refer to it as Sabai.
- Broth- This dish also contains broth which is referred to as Wuqing. This should be very clear to highlight the robust flavor of the beef.
The Chinese use different styles of noodles to prepare this dish. While some of them use thin noodles, others prefer using wider noodles. They pull hand-made noodles into shapes before preparing this meal. This process involves spinning, rolling, and pulling.
How to make Lanzhou noodles
Though it is not easy to prepare authentic Lanzhou noodles at home, you can come up with something close to the original dish. The process often takes a few hours. Follow the steps below to prepare Lanzhou noodles.
Prepare beef bone soup
Obtaining this soup in a clear appearance is not that easy. When preparing Lanzhou noodles, you should strive for this since using unclear beef bone soup can lead to poor results. To prepare beef bone soup, you need half a kg of chicken bones and 2kg of beef bones. Chicken bones are vital since they can add a great flavor to the stock.
Soak the bones in some water, transfer them to a big soup pot and cook them for about ten minutes. After this, rinse the bones under running water as you get rid of any dark spots, then transfer them into a clean pot and submerge them in clean water. Use a ladle to get rid of any foam on the water until it is clear. Cook the stock as you maintain the water temperature at 90 degrees. After cooking, get rid of the fat on the beef stock by filtering.
Cook the stew beef
Start by soaking the beef in some water for a couple of hours as you change the water and turn the meat regularly. After four hours, transfer the beef to a deep pot, and add salt, ginger, coriander, bay leaves, fennel seed, and white peppercorns. Cover the pot and cook the beef at a low temperature so that the meat retains moisture. You can cook the beef for 3 hours. Once the beef is done, you should give it enough time to cool and then refrigerate it overnight.
Preparing the Lanzhou noodles
Transfer the beef stock you prepared into a pot and add water. Place the pot on a cooker and let it boil. You should then season the stock using salt and add garlic, water, and ginger. Immerse the radish in the boiling water for about 30 seconds. Add more water to the pot, then add the noodles. Give them about a minute to cook, then use chopsticks to remove the Lanzhou noodles.
Get rid of excess water, then place them in a bowl. Place the stewed beef, white radish, fresh coriander, and green onions in the noodles. Use a ladle to get rid of any excess oil. Feel free to add any seasonings you prefer, such as soy sauce, to the Lanzhou noodles.
Lanzhou noodles are among the top fast food dishes in China today. Many people wait in restaurants for this dish since it is quite delicious. Though the dish has been in existence since the Tang dynasty, it has managed to stand the test of time. If you wish to make this dish, you should follow the steps we have highlighted above.