Monday, September 13, 2010

Noodles with Special Meat Sauce (Zha Jiang Mian 炸酱面)

 炸酱面 (Zha Jiang Mian) is a typical northern chinese cuisine which was made popular in Singapore in recent years due to the new influx of Chinese immigrants from mainland China. The "native" Chinese (3rd and 4th generation) living in Singapore are mostly descendents of immigrants from the southern provinces of China, such as Hokkien, Teochew, Hainanese, Cantonese & Hakka people. As such, the prevalent Chinese cuisine are mostly rice dishes with strong Malay and Indian culinary influences, unlike Chinese from the northern provinces who grew up on noodles and buns. My memories of noodles cooked the Singapore Chinese style are mostly wanton noodles, fishball noodles, charsiew noodles, fried hokkien mee, and laksa etc. However I have tasted  炸酱面 (Zha Jiang Mian) before while I was still in Singapore and it was quite to my liking although I have never figured out how to make it.

So last Sunday, I tried to replicate this  炸酱面 (Zha Jiang Mian) recipe and I was quite pleased with the results, given that it was my first try. On hindsight though, I would try to use spring onions instead of shallots to marinate the minced meat in future, and cut down on the amount of water so as to make the gravy thicker. I would also try to go easy with the amount of shallots and garlic as too much shallots and garlic may cause flatulence and bad breath, and that will inevitably cause a lot of embarassment. Imagine talking to others with bad breath and farting at the same time. :)

I whipped up the Zha Jiang Mian and paired it with stir-fry cauliflowers and carrots.

Recipe adapted from Violet Fenying's blog (which has ceased to exist since Mar 2010)

Ingredient A (for 3 persons)
500g minced pork

Ingredient B
3 tbsp water
1 tsp sesame oil
¼ tsp pepper
1 tbsp corn flour

Ingredient C
5 stalks spring onions OR 3 shallots (chopped)
2 cloves garlic (chopped)

Ingredient D (remove skin, chopped)
3 shallots
2 cloves garlic

Seasoning (mix well)
400 ml water
1 tbsp sesame oil
¼ tsp dark soya sauce
3 tbsp hoisin sauce (Lee Kum Kee brand)
3 - 4 tbsp black bean paste (Lee Kum Kee brand)

Ingredient E (mix well)
1 tbsp corn flour
2 tbsp water

400g egg noodles or spaghetti

Other Ingredients *
1 cucumber (cut into 4, shredded)
1 carrot (cut into 4, shredded)
2 red chillies (remove seeds, cut into strips)
50g fried white sesame seeds

* you can add them if you wish but I skipped them 

1. Combine Ingredient A with Ingredient B.
2. Add Ingredient C, marinate for 20 min.

3. Heat up wok with oil, fry Ingredient D till fragrant.

4. Add in marinated minced pork, fry till fragrant.

5. Stir in seasoning sauce, bring to a boil.

6. Add Ingredient E to thicken the gravy, turn off the heat.

7. Cook pasta in pot of boiling water til al dente.

8. Pour in the seasoning sauce, top up with other ingredients* and serve while hot.


  1. Yum! This is one of my favorite foods. I was just talking about it with Mary Moh, here. what a coincidence. :) I haven't eaten it for such a long time though. Maybe, I'll request it from my mom on my birthday. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

  2. Hello Esther,

    Thanks for dropping my blog! Do try out the recipe and let me know if u like it :P



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