As mentioned in my previous Blog we visited the Noodle Loft here in Beijing. A much talked about establishment that has theatre whilst you enjoy a steaming bowl of fresh Noodles of various shapes and sizes.
This is the place where the brigade of chefs perform a variety of skilled moves, turning out various shapes and sizes from the handmade dough. We have returned to the restaurant today as Chef Zukai has kindly agreed to give Chung Yin a lesson in making the noodles.
The chef has all ready weighed out the quantiies of flour and sets Chung Yin to work, by adding the water and kneading the dough, it is obvious from the start that this will be no easy task, as dough comes together the more difficult it is to knead, Chung Yin comments that he wont need the gym today.
After around 10 mins of hard graft, the dough is ready to make into noodles. This will follow a process of stretching, shaping & twisting, this is a lot easier than it looks, the chef tells us it takes about 3 months to perfect this technique. Chung Yin starts by stretching the dough, alongside him is the apprentice who also has only been doing this for a few weeks, a few moments later the dough is smashed against the wooden board to soften, this process goes on for a couple of minuites, then once stretched long enough it is twisted
Chef Zukai shows Chung Yin how to complete the twist, which will take some practice, after a few attempts he has something that pretty much resembles what the chef is looking for.
Its now time to create the noodles, this again looks a simple process of twists and turns, the trick here is to be quick and confident, otherwise you end up with thousands of pieces of broken noodles.
whilst all this is going on behind us the kitchen is a hive of activity, getting ready for lunch, with chefs throwing, shaving, forming various other shapes such as cats ears, hand pulled dumplings, and even one type of noodle made with a single chopstick all are made to order and seem to take no time at all.
20 Xi Dawang LuCBD,