Food & Nutrition

The 5 Most Common Noodle Dishes

noodle bowls and chopsticks
Written by Nancy

You’ll be hard-pressed to find someone who doesn’t like noodles. Noodle dishes are said to be the ultimate comfort food and exist in all forms and variants.

Here’s a look at some of the most popular noodle dishes enjoyed across the world.

Pad Thai

Pad Thai is one of the most popular noodle dishes worldwide. Originating from Thailand, it’s popularly served in restaurants, cafes, and street vendors in the UK. It’s easy to see what makes the dish so irresistible. After all, it includes a savoury noodle combining the sweet and sour flavours of garlic, shallots, tamarind pulp, palm sugar, fish sauce, dried shrimp, lime juice, eggs, chilli flakes, and peanuts. These are served with thin rice noodles that are folded into the broth to soak in the rich aroma and flavour.

Even though it may seem like there’s a lot going on in the dish, Pad Thai can be prepared fairly quickly. You can also opt for variations, including chicken, fish balls, or tofu. It’s your call!

Ramen

We can’t talk about noodle dishes without mentioning ramen. Arguably Japan’s most famous dish, a bowl of ramen comprises wheat noodles, a savoury broth, and several toppings. There’s no one way to prepare this popular dish. The noodles can be stir-fried, cooked in a soupy broth, or mixed with a light sauce before being added to the bowl. You can pair the broth and noodles with your choice of toppings, such as marinated chicken or pork, green onions, bean sprouts, soy sauce egg, chilli flakes, and lettuce.

Ramen can also be prepared using instant noodles. This makes for the perfect comfort food that can be enjoyed on a winter night.

a bowl of ramen

Stir-Fried Noodles

If you want to keep your noodle dish preparation simple, there are a couple of stir-fried options you can try for lunch, dinner, or snacks.

Take Pad See Ew, for example. The dish name literally translates to stir-fried soy sauce noodles. The process involves throwing in a bunch of ingredients (noodles, spices, sauces, veggies, protein, etc.) into a hot wok and letting the noodles caramelise. Once the soy sauce has nicely coated the noodles, you can adjust the seasoning to achieve your desired sweet and savoury flavour. Make sure you keep stirring the noodles to ensure they cook all the way through without burning.

Another similar dish is Mee Goreng, which is made using thick chewy egg noodles. These are tossed into wok alongside shrimp, fish cakes, bean sprouts, and herbs. A sweet and savoury sauce is prepared using soy sauce, honey/brown sugar, vinegar, and spices and added to the noodles. The dish originates from Indonesia but has fast become a favourite among noodle lovers across the world.

note mentioning “lunch time”

Sichuan Dan Dan Noodles

If you like spicy food, you’re going to love this dish. It’s prepared by smothering egg noodles with a generous layer of mala spicy chilli oil. This is accompanied with some tangy greens and a portion of meat (usually pork) that’s also been seasoned with spices.

The mala chilli oil is the true star of this dish, which explains why the dish is also referred to as Sichuan Chilli Noodles. It’s extremely easy to prepare and is strangely addictive. You’re going to come back for more even if you have a low spice tolerance because of how flavourful this noodle dish is. Commonly served as street food in Sichuan, China, the dish is also found on most menus in traditional Pan Asian restaurants globally.

Laksa

Laksa is a popular Malaysian noodle dish that combines coconut milk and seafood. The dish has a curry-like broth with a coconut milk base. This is seasoned with a blend of ginger, lemongrass, turmeric, galangal, and other local spices that enhance the sweet creaminess of the milk.

Along with noodles, shrimp or fish balls are usually added to the dish. A poached or boiled egg is also added. You can replace the seafood with another protein as per your preferences.

Elevate your noodle dishes by pairing them with organic bamboo chopsticks. These allow for easy dining and make the experience more fun while adding an authentic Asian touch to it.

About the author

Nancy

I’m Nancy and no, I didn’t always look like I do in that picture on the right. My foray into health and fitness began as a brace-faced, 16 year-old who was too afraid to wear a two-piece at the beach because I felt my body paled in comparison to my much more toned friends.

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