When you think about making homemade noodles, you probably think about passing dough through a pasta press machine and expending hours of effort just to make a small batch of noodles. Undoubtedly, fresh noodles are amazing. This Vienamese recipe for Thick Noodles is completely different and much simpler. It doesn’t require a lot of equipment, just a potato ricer. If you don’t have a potato ricer, you can simply roll-out the dough and cut the noodles by hand. The dough requires no resting time so you can make the dough, boil the noodles and have fresh, homemade noodles in about 15 minutes. How’s that for fast!?!?
Ingredients Thick Noodles and Fish Cake Soup Recipe (Banh Canh Cha Ca)
1 cup rice flour
1 cup tapioca starch
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 cup boiling water
2 tsp vegetable oil
20 oz thick noodles (recipe above)
5 cups chicken stock
1/4 small onion, thinly sliced
1 Tbsp fish sauce
8 oz Fish Cakes or fish balls
1/4 chopped green onions and cilantro
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
Directions Thick Noodles and Fish Cake Soup (Banh Canh Cha Ca Recipe)
Add rice flour, tapioca starch and salt into a mixing bowl. Mix on Low speed for 15 seconds. Add the vegetable oil and boiling water and mix on Low (2) speed for 1 minute. Scrape around the bowl and push dry ingredients toward the center. Mix on Low (2) speed for 2 more minutes. Increase to Medium Low speed (3-4) and mix for another 2 minutes.
Dust the work surface with rice flour and then scoop out the dough. With floured hands, pat the dough into a loaf. Cut in half and then pat each half into a rough ball.
Prepare a water bath by filling a large bowl with cold water and then adding 1 cup ice. Bring a large pot to a rapid bowl. Add 1 tsp vegetable oil to the water.
Coat the inside of the potato ricer with vegetable oil or non-stick cooking spray. Place one of the dough balls into the potato ricer and then slowly squeeze the handles together to extrude the noodles. After all of the dough is pushed through, dip the bottom of the ricer into the water and slowly swirl to release the noodles. Repeat the same steps with the second dough ball. Gently stir the noodles and boil for 3-4 minutes or until they float to the top. Transfer the cooked noodles to the cold water bath. Swirl the noodles in the cold water for 1 minute. Drain and rinse with cold running water. Shake the colander to remove the excess water. If not serving right away, add 1 tsp vegetable oil to the noodles and toss together. Cover with plastic wrap until ready to serve.
Bring the chicken stock to a boil. Add the sliced onions and fish sauce and simmer for 2 minutes.
Put the thick noodles into a soup bowl. Layer on top, thinly sliced Fish Cake. Add a generous amount of the broth. Top with the chopped green onions and cilantro mix along with freshly ground black pepper.
Serve with a side of fresh greens, herbs, red chilies and fish sauce. Enjoy!
Yields: 20 oz cooked noodles, 2-4 servings noodle soup
Note: Thick Noodles and Fish Cake Soup (Banh Canh Cha Ca Recipe)
This recipe uses equal amounts of rice flour and tapioca starch. If you would like chewier noodles, increase the tapioca starch and use 1 1/4 cups to 3/4 cups rice flour.
Be sure to use boiling water. The boiling water is needed to cook the rice flour and tapioca starch and activate the elasticity in the dough. If you are not able to stretch the dough or it’s breaking off in chunks, the water was not hot enough. This means when you run the dough through the potato ricer, the noodles will be broken into little bits instead of forming into long strands. If this happens, microwave the dough for 1-2 minutes on High and see if that improves the elasticity.
If you’re rolling out the dough and cutting the noodles by hand, reduce the amount of boiling water to 7 oz instead of 1 cup. This makes the dough drier and easy to roll. Be sure to coat your work surface and rolling pin with rice flour when working with the dough to keep it from sticking.
These fresh noodles are best if consumed within 5 days. To reheat, spread out on a plate and microwave on Low for 1 minute. Optionally, dunk in boiling water for 15 seconds and then drain. If using the noodles in a soup, you can also drop them directly into the broth and warm them up that way.