Get into the Bowl

Over the course of our journey through China and Hong Kong we encountered many forms of noodles and dumplings. It seemed that on every corner the was a small shop specializing in some form of delicious dough manipulation. From brothy to saucy, hand pulled to shaved,  with condiments from chili oil with numbing hua jiao (sichuan peppercorns) to sour pickled green beans, each shop had their own specialty that they considered to be the best. Here is a sample of some of our favorite finds. The happiness and satisfaction that can be found in a humble bowl of boiled dough and broth is truly amazing. Enjoy.

At Gong Ying Pin Ming people have been coming to get their slurp on for generations.  Located next to the Wenshu Monastery in Chengdu, China, this little noodle and dumpling shop has survived among the slightly touristy reconstructed “old city.”  Here, you order your dose at the front counter. You are then presented with a ticket.  Bring your ticket to the open chaotic kitchen to complete your order. Then clamor to find  a tiny wooden seat to tuck in. There are only about 25 or so wooded stools and the place is packed.  For the Dan Dan and Tomato Egg Bok Choy, it’s well worth the effort.

Bok Choy, Tomato and egg over rolled wheat noodle.  Simple.  Excellent for breakfast!

Ahh. The humble and unassuming Dan Dan Mien.  One of our favorites.  This little microcosm of goodness looks very simple, but once you give it a few tosses, watch out! The scents of the  aromatic chili oil,  ground porky goodness and notes of umami from pickled mustard come to life and coat the plain noodles with what is reminiscent of a light Bolognese! Rich and delicious this little bowl was the best that we had.

Zhong Dumpling – Simply filled with ground pork and boiled, dressed with Sweet Soy, Chili Oil and Garlic.  Can’t beat it with a chopstick!

Boiled Egg and Chive Dumplings.  Mild and wild at the same time.  The skin encases the fluffy egg and a vibrant garlic-chive mixture.  A little pickled vegetable … a little chili oil … a little taste of heaven!

Road Side Wonton Stand! A Master’s hands deftly whip these little sails into shape. When cooked the thin dough becomes slippery and barely clings to the juicy pork filling…

Like so.  Pork Wonton in everyday broth.

Pickled Green Bean Noodles with a side of cooking water “Tea.”

Rolled thick wheat noodles with Yu Choy, Green Chilies and Sour Green Beans and Sesame.  Thanks Pelly for showing us this one!

Hand Shaved right into the pot!

This device is not only excellent for shaving noodles but also good for protecting oneself on the dark streets of Chengdu.

Hand pulled! This particular gentleman has be stretching noodles by hand for 3 years! Beautifully rhythmic and  aesthetically pleasing, the art of hand pulling noodles is  a joy to watch.  Even better? Eating em.

Hand pulled noodles in a spicy broth with egg!


Looking back on all of these pictures made us sad that there wasn’t a place in Chicago where one could get a good bowl.  So, lucky for us and for you, we do what we want!

Our next Pop-up venture will be to capture the rustic simplicity of some of these above items and bring them to you. We have been testing doughs,  simmering broths and getting our wonton technique down for …

Flour and Bones: A Pop-Up Noodle Joint.

We will be at Dodo from 5pm – 1am May 2nd through May 11th.  Dodo will have beer cocktails and wine.  We will be presenting handmade dumplings and noodles with small plates to go with.

3 Responses to “Get into the Bowl”
  1. Jennifer says:

    Will there be veg-friendly options?

  2. Rachel says:

    Had a great time at Flour & Bones last night! Can’t wait to try your next pop up restaurant. For my review of it, go to:

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