Different Types of Noodles

There are different types of noodles we use for our favorite Asian recipes. Understanding how to cook and store them is also important. Learn more here.

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Types of Noodles Popular in Asia

Noodles are one of the common staples in Asian cuisine alongside our favorite rice. Certain types of Asian dishes make use of specific types of noodles necessary for the balance of flavor and texture, while others are open to experimentation, just like how you get to choose your noodles at your favorite noodle soup stall! 

You can find noodles almost anywhere and they are perfect for soup dishes, stir-fry, salads, spring rolls and fried pastries. While there are over 10 types of noodles used across the continent, we narrow down to the 5 most popular ones that deserve a mention.

 

How to Use: Different Types of Asian Noodles 

Udon Noodles

Udon noodles facts:

  • White wheat noodles

  • Thickest of all Japanese noodles

  • Fat in size

  • Offers a chewy texture to each bite and the distinct bounce as they dangle from the chopsticks

  • Has a neutral flavor and pairs amazingly well with stronger ingredients such as ginger and soy sauce

     

How to cook udon noodles:

  • For 2 to 3 minutes, soak fresh udon noodles in a bowl of well-salted boiling water until just tender. If noodles are dry, soak them for 8 minutes

  • Drain noodles and rinse briefly under cold water to stop the noodles from cooking further and remove some starch from the surface so that noodles do not stick together

     

How to store udon noodles:

  • Fresh udon noodles should be kept in the refrigerator and used by the date of expiry

  • Dried udon noodles will last for a longer period of time on the shelf away from sunlight

     

Ramen noodles

 

Ramen noodles facts:

  • Yellow Chinese-style curly egg and wheat noodles

  • Thin and very long 

  • Springy texture due to alkalized water used in the dough

 

How to cook ramen noodles:

  • For 1 to 2 minutes, cook fresh ramen noodles in hot water or the boiling broth 

  • Dried ramen noodles will need to be cooked longer till tender

 

How to store ramen noodles:

  • Homemade ramen noodles can be placed on a floured baking sheet. Cover and freeze until solid up to 2 weeks. There is no need to thaw before cooking
  • Dried noodles bought from the store can be kept till expiry date away from heat

 

Wonton noodles

Wonton noodles facts:

  • Originated from Canton, now called Guangzhou

  • Very popular in Hong Kong dishes

  • Come in thin and wide variety

     

How to cook wonton noodles:

  • Cook wonton noodles in a boiling pot of salted water for 30 to 40 seconds without going over a minute

  • Run them under cold water and drain well to avoid overcooking before using them for soups or stir-fried dishes

     

How to store wonton noodles:

  • Dried wonton noodles bought from the store in packs can be kept in a dry and cool place away from sunlight

     

Rice noodles

Rice noodles facts:

  • Made from rice flour and water, sometimes with added tapioca or cornstarch to elevate chewy texture and transparent appearance

  • Popular ones used in Asia are flat rice noodles and rice vermicelli

  • Thick rice vermicelli is used as a staple ingredient for the famous Laksa

 

How to cook rice noodles:

  • Rice vermicelli is cooked by pouring water over them and letting it soak till soft

  • Flat rice noodles are cooked like pasta in boiling salted water

 

How to store rice noodles:

  • Fresh rice noodles can be kept in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days

  • Dried noodles bought from supermarkets can be kept till expiry date in a cool and dry place

Glass noodles

Glass noodles facts:

  • Also called cellophane noodles

  • Made from starch, such as mung bean, yam or sweet potato

  • Turn transparent when cooked

  • Springy and do not carry any taste by themselves, so they pair well with a range of sauces and dressings

 

How to cook glass noodles:

 

How to store glass noodles:

 

  • Uncooked glass noodles bought in packs should be kept in a cool and dry place away from sunlight
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