Cook This: Kimchi Dan Dan Udon

December 12, 2016

Sichuan and Korean food are both regarded as hot and spicy. These two share similar flavors beyond the heat; both mix sour, pungent, and aromatic ingredients in their food. Popular Sichuan dishes include: mapo tofu, kung pao chicken, and dan dan noodles. This dish combines these two cuisines by updating the traditional dan dan noodles with Korean flavors.

This version retains the flavors of the dish but with a few alterations. Using Korean kimchi and gochujang lends acidity and enhances the spice of the dish. Substituting thick udon instead of the traditional fine noodles make the dish substantial and its chewy texture contrasts the peanut’s bite. You get an interesting mix of textures and flavors with a mouthful of these noodles. The peanuts and fresh leeks provide crunch to the dish, while the combination of chiu chow chili, kimchi, and gochujang  mimics the mouth-numbing spiciness we associate with Sichuan food. A bowl of this kimchi dan dan udon stands as proof that Korean and Chinese cuisines work well together.

Kimchi Dan Dan Udon

Time: 20 minutes
Yield: 2 servings

Ingredients: Spicy Ground Pork

  • 30ml canola oil
  • 50g kimchi
  • 150g pork, ground
  • 1 tbsp ginger, minced
  • 30ml soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp gochujang
  • salt and pepper, to taste

ingredients: broth

  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • salt, to taste
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 pc chicken broth cube
  • 2 cloves garlic

Ingredients: Garnishes

  • 30g kimchi
  • 200g udon, precooked
  • 3 tbsp chiu chow chili oil
  • ¼ bunch leeks, sliced
  • 2 bunches mustard leaves, cut into 3 stems
  • 30g peanuts, toasted

Procedure: Spicy Ground Pork

  1. Heat a wide heavy based pan and add the oil.
  2. Sauté kimchi until the color changes and smells toasty.
  3. Add pork and turn continuously to avoid lumps. Cook until the liquid dries out and pork fries in its own fat.
  4. Add the ginger and sauté lightly.
  5. Pour in soy sauce and gochujang. Mix to incorporate.
  6. Season to taste.

Procedure: Broth

Mix all ingredients together and bring to a boil. Mix well to dissolve all solid ingredients. Season to taste.

Procedure: Plating

  1. Bring a pot of water to a boil to reheat noodles.
  2. Split kimchi evenly into 3 bowls.
  3. Reheat noodles in boiling water and divide evenly into bowls with kimchi.
  4. Blanch the mustard leaves in the boiling water.
  5. Pour around ¾ cup broth in each bowl.
  6. Top with pork mixture, chili oil, and peanuts.
  7. Garnish with Leeks and mustard leaves.
  8. Add more chili oil for more heat.
Bernice Escobar SEE AUTHOR Bernice Escobar

Bernice loves to get nerdy about food and making people hungry. In her free time, she attempts to play with her anti-social cat and fantasizes about all things sweet.

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