Chinese Noodles From a Chile-Haunted Region

“The rise of Sichuan food in New York has made the past decade or two a glorious era for prowlers of Chinese restaurants. Chongqing chicken and mung-bean jelly proliferated as skilled chefs flocked to the city. But while the miles of dan dan noodles and mountains of Sichuan peppercorns have been exhilarating, they have tended to overshadow the cuisine of another great chile-haunted region, Hunan.”

“When people in Hunan get hungry for a bowl of noodles, what they have in mind are mifen: long, white strands made from pounded rice, so smooth they may slither right out of the chopsticks of inexperienced slurpers. Chances for New Yorkers to practice their antiskid chopstick techniques have been limited, generally speaking, to the rice noodles of other parts of Asia. When you could find Hunanese noodles around town, they tended to be tucked away on larger menus with so many other Hunanese opportunities that they were rarely given a chance to slither.”

Read more here.

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