Better Than Take-Out Dan Dan Noodles
- 1 Teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns
- 2 Tablespoons Chinese sesame paste or tahini
- 1 Tablespoon Black (Chinkiang) vinegar or unseasoned rice vinegar
- 2 Teaspoons Sugar
- 3 Tablespoons Homemade or store-bought chile crisp, divided
- 2 Tablespoons Plus 1 tsp soy sauce
- 1 Tablespoon Vegetable oil
- 10 Oz Ground pork
- ½ Teaspoon Five-spice powder
- 4 Garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 Package dried egg noodles
- Kosher salt
- Crushed unsalted, dry-roasted peanuts (for serving)
- Sliced scallions (for serving)
- SPECIAL EQUIPMENT
- A spice mill or a mortar and pestle
- Sichuan peppercorns
- Chinese sesame paste or tahini
- Black (Chinkiang) vinegar or unseasoned rice vinegar
- Chile crisp
- Ground pork
- Five-spice powder
- Garlic cloves
- Egg noodles
- Unsalted, dry-roasted peanuts
- Soy sauce
- Vegetable oil
- Kosher salt
- Toast Sichuan peppercorns in a small skillet over medium-high heat, tossing often, until slightly darkened and fragrant, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a spice mill or mortar and pestle and let cool; finely grind. Stir ground Sichuan peppercorns, Chinese sesame paste or tahini, vinegar, sugar, 2 Tbsps chile crisp, and 2 Tbsps soy sauce in a small bowl to combine; set aside.
- Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add ground pork, five-spice powder, and remaining 1 tsp soy sauce to pan, breaking meat up into pieces with a wooden spoon. Cook, undisturbed, until it begins to brown, about 3 minutes. Stir and continue to cook, breaking up meat into smaller pieces, until cooked through, about 2 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Remove from heat and add Sichuan peppercorn mixture; set aside.
- Cook egg noodles in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until 1 minute short of al dente. Using tongs, transfer pasta to skillet with sauce and pour in ½ cup noodle cooking liquid. Bring to a simmer and cook, tossing gently, until sauce is creamy and clings to pasta, about 1 minute. Drizzle in remaining 1 Tbsp chile crisp.
- Divide pasta among plates and top with peanuts and scallions.