08 April 2015

Simpler Pulled Noodles

I've been making laghman this way for a few years now (here's the recipe the first time I posted it) but I'm finally getting around to posting it with photos which is helpful since these aren't familiar to most people.

Mix about 4 cups all-purpose flour, 2 eggs, 1 tsp salt, and enough water to make a stiffish dough, then knead it a bit.  You can do this in a mixer or food processor if you like.  Shape the dough into a ball, cover, and let sit for at least two hours.


Break off walnut-sized pieces of dough and roll them into long, pencil-thick strips. After forming each strip, oil it, then coil it on an oiled plate (start in the middle and work your way out, then when the plate is full, start a second layer till the dough is all used up). Cover the coiled dough mound with plastic and let it sit till you're ready to cook the noodles (you want to let it sit for at least 30 minutes and much more time is better- at least two hours).  As you can see, you don't have to be perfect.

Get a large pot of water boiling and have a bowl of cold water and a big strainer scooper thing (I don't know what they're called) ready. While the water is getting hot, start stretching the noodles. Take each noodle one at a time and pull it with both hands into a very long, thinner noodle. Work carefully so you don't break the noodles. Leave each pulled strip in a separate little heap on the counter until the water boils.

 Take each noodle one at a time and pull it with both hands into a very long, thinner noodle. Work carefully so you don't break the noodles. Leave each pulled strip in a separate little heap on the counter until the water boils.
Holding your hands out, about 18 inches apart with the palms facing each other, take the ends of three or four little heaps together between your thumb and your palm and run them around the back of your hand. Bring the dough on top of your other hand and then down across the back of your hand. Bring the first hand around to pick the dough up again on top of the hand and then around the back. Repeat that motion to make a sort of figure-8 with the noodles. 

When you have all three strands wrapped around your hands, pull the noodles again by moving your hands farther apart (don't break them, but do give them a good pull), then drop them off your hands into the boiling water.

Stir the noodles to prevent sticking. They'll float to the top as the water comes back to a boil. Fish them out with the strainer about a minute or less after the water boils again. Dip them into the cold water, then transfer to a plate. It's easiest to keep each batch on separate plates because the noodles are so long that they're hard to get out of a communal bowl.

If you're making a lot of noodles, they'll get cold before you get them all done, so briefly dip them back in the hot water before serving to warm them up.  Or you can fry them which is what my son prefers and I have to say that's a really tasty option.


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