Do note this recipe may not be the most "authentic" Liang Pi recipe, but it's a quick and delicious version that will satisfy the palate just the same!
½ package Twin Marquis plain noodles, or any Asian wheat noodle
3 oz firm tofu OR ½ cup vital wheat gluten, cubed and fried (tofu is my hacked version, however vital wheat gluten is more authentic to traditional Liang Pi noodles)
½ cup julienned cucumber
3 tbsp black vinegar
2-3 tbsp soy sauce
⅛ cup neutral oil (such as grapeseed oil)
1 clove raw garlic, finely minced
2 star anise
10-15 whole Sichuan peppercorns
1-1.5 tsp Chinese five spice
1-2 tsp chili flakes depending on your spice preference
A sprinkle of sesame seeds
¼ cup scallions, sliced
Small bundle of cilantro, including the stems (the stems have SO much flavor and a lovely bite! Never toss cilantro stems!)
*These measurements are very much approximated. Feel free to add or subtract each ingredient to your liking.
Boil the noodles for a few minutes until cooked, strain, and place in a serving bowl. On top of the noodles, add the raw minced garlic, Chinese five spice, and chili flakes. Meanwhile, fry the tofu in a pan or airfryer until it becomes crispy, OR fry the vital wheat gluten in a pan with a little soy sauce until fully cooked. This will be added to the noodles in the final step.
In a pan, combine oil, star anise and Sichuan peppercorns and toast on medium heat until the aromatics become fragrant and appear toasted and dark brown, but not burnt. Remove the oil from the heat and immediately pour over your noodle and spice mixture. This "tempering" process will quickly and lightly fry the aromatics added to the noodles, and you should smell the garlic and Chinese five spice in the air within seconds. Wait until the oil cools for about a minute, then add the black vinegar and soy sauce.
Plate the noodles with cilantro, cucumber, scallions, fried tofu (or vital wheat gluten), and top with sesame seeds. Before eating, mix all ingredients together.