Although this dough is very quick to put together, I’ve attached 2 ½ muscles for this recipe is because I want to stress to you that each quarter of dough needs to be rolled very thin before being cut and then fried. Don’t worry, though, since the added flavoring ingredients (the seeds, ground minced dehydrated onions, etc.) all help to sever the tough strands of gluten developed while kneading. If new to making and rolling dough, I suggest you watch the Video of me making these fried noodles which are, by far, the best I, or anyone who’s had them, have ever eaten.
Ingredients For the Chinese noodles
- 2 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
- 1 rounded teaspoon salt
- 2 rounded tablespoons each beige and black sesame seeds
- 1 rounded tablespoon pan-toasted dehydrated minced onions, cooled and finely ground (toss in a hot, dry skillet, over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until golden but not burnt)
- 1 tablespoon dehydrated minced garlic, finely ground
- A few grinds of black pepper
- 2/3 to 3/4 cup cool tap water
- 3 to 4 quarts flavorless vegetable oil or a highly refined peanut oil, for frying
To make the Chinese noodles
Whisk together the flour, salt, sesame seeds, ground dried onions, garlic, and pepper in a medium-sized mixing bowl. While combining the ingredients, with your working hand, add only enough water to create a moist (not wet) shaggy mass of dough. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured wooden board and knead it, using a firm, brisk and deliberate push-fold-and-turn motion, until the dough is firm, smooth and elastic. If the dough ever feels sticky, add a little additional flour. Cover the dough with a clean, dry kitchen towel and let it relax for 30 minutes, for easier rolling.
To set up to fry
If using a saucepan
Pour in enough oil to half fill a wide, heavy-bottomed 8-quart saucepan and attach a deep-frying thermometer securely to the side of the pan. Don’t allow the mercury tip to touch the bottom. Heat the oil over medium-high heat, to 375oF. If using a frying basket, let it heat in the oil.
If using an electric deep-fryer
Pour oil to the designated line and heat according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Line a large wire-mesh rack and a deep roasting pan with paper towels and place them near the stove, but at a safe distance.
To roll, cut and fry the noodles
Uncover the dough and, using the blade of a pastry scraper, cut the dough into 4 equal pieces. Keep the rest of the pieces covered, as you work with one piece at a time. On a lightly floured board, roll out one piece of the dough into a very thin (not more than 1/16-inch thick) rectangle. As you roll, occasionally turn the dough over and dust both the board and the dough with flour. When very thin, lay dough in front of you with one of the short ends closest to you.
Dust the top lightly with flour, spreading it out evenly with your hand and roll up the dough (going away from you) into a loose jelly-roll. Using a sharp serrated knife, slice the roll into 1/4-inch slices. Lift each slice and let it unravel, draping it over the inside of your nonworking hand. When finished, if the oil is not hot enough, lay those noodles to the side, in a loose pile, covered with a clean kitchen towel. Roll and cut the remaining dough this way.
When the oil reaches the desired temperature, carefully ease a single pile of raw noodles into the hot oil and immediately (and gently) stir and separate them, using a long two-pronged fork. The noodles will quickly “balloon up,” and little blisters will appear on their surfaces. Fry the noodles until they’re golden on the bottom, about 2 minutes (a little longer in an electric fryer), and then carefully turn them over with the long fork to fry on the other side, about 2 minutes more. When done, the noodles should be golden, light textured and perfectly crisp. Don’t let them get overly dark, or they can taste burnt. Using either the fry basket or a long-handled wire-mesh tool, such as a spider, transfer each batch of cooked noodles from the oil to the paper-lined rack. Shake to remove excess oil, and then pile them in the prepared roasting pan.