Help me find the name of a noodle dish I had in China
December 5, 2010 6:23 PM   Subscribe

Help me find the name of a noodle dish I had in China

I had this amazing noodle dish when I was in Xi'an 3 years ago, and I want to find how to recreate it. I am absolutely clueless about Chinese cuisine.

It was a pile of fettucine-width noodles on a cast-iron skillet/platter (like the kind restaurants serve fajitas on). It was in a thick orange-brown gravy, which was a little gritty but extremely delicious. The sauce was not spicy and was a little sweet. That's as specific as I can get since it was 3 years ago. There were lots of vegetables on top.

I had the sizzling noodle platter at Ginger House in NYC about a year ago and it was very similar. Googling "sizzling noodles" brings up all different kinds (most with thin, spaghetti-width noodles) and I'm not sure it's the same thing.

Does anyone have any idea what this dish is called or how I can recreate it?
posted by shoreline to Food & Drink (7 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Was it Tie Ban Niu Rou with noodles? The sauce sounds about right, and it's sizzling.
posted by pecknpah at 6:38 PM on December 5, 2010

Have you tried contacting Ginger House to ask?
posted by LSK at 7:53 PM on December 5, 2010

Other than the sizzling pan, that sounds similar to some of the hand-pulled noodle dishes served at Xi'an Famous Foods, which has locations in Flushing and Manhattan. Some of their dishes are spicy, some not, but all are delicious! However, I've found that Chinese dishes which are less common in the US aren't always consistently translated, so it might be called different things (in English) at different places... Also, the thicker, flat noodles are often called "chow fun" in the US, in case that helps.
posted by unsub at 8:26 PM on December 5, 2010

Could it be a variation of Pad See Eew? Actually a Thai dish (in origin) I believe, but also found (in Australia anyway) in Chinese noodle houses as well.

The key characteristics are flat (and wide) rice noodles, (sweet) soy sauce, and the burned/brown bits you get from the wok.

(Also, my first post - yay!)
posted by thelizardqueen at 12:01 AM on December 6, 2010

take a look here and see if any of them look similar.

It sounds quite likely to be the ubiquitous chao3mian4 炒面。 The numbers indicate the tones. Which oftentimes is actually a Shanghai dish。 Sometimes it is served on a skillet.

If this looks like it is the dish, reply and I'll see if I can't search out a recipe for you。
posted by chinabound at 1:58 AM on December 6, 2010

Maybe a version of the famous Shaanxi Biang Biang noodles? Not normally served on an iron pan AFAIK, but then that's not particularly far.
posted by Abiezer at 2:36 AM on December 6, 2010

I think it'd be a good idea to try and identify the noodles first, if not the dish itself. Were they by any chance wide, white rice noodles? 'Cause that sounds like chow fun / ho fun / shahe fen to me. It might be helpful to look at Wikipedia's list of Chinese noodles.
posted by junques at 9:53 AM on December 6, 2010

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