Cooking With Chef Babs

Chilled Sesame Noodles

4 servings


20 minutes

active time

35 minutes

total time


1 tablespoon neutral-flavored oil such as vegetable oil.

12 ounces thin flour “yangchun noodles”, Chinese egg noodles, or other thin wheat noodle (see notes)

1/2 cup Chinese sesame paste (see notes)

1 block furu aka fermented tofu (optional, but highly recommend)

4 1/2 tablespoons sesame oil, preferably toasted

1/4 cup Chinese light soy sauce (see notes)

3 tablespoons sugar

2 1/2 tablespoons Chinese black vinegar (see notes)

1/2 tablespoon Chinese dark soy sauce (see notes)

1/2 tablespoon Sichuan peppercorn oil (optional, but highly recommend)

1/2 tablespoon salt

1 tablespoon mayonnaise, preferably Kewpie Mayo

Roughly 1/4 water

Sliced green onions, for serving

Chili oil, for serving

Toasted sesame seeds, preferably ground in a pestle and mortar.


- In a small skillet, heat the oil just until it begins to shimmer. Transfer to a medium bowl and let cool.

- Add the noodles to a boiling pot of water, cooking the noodles according to the package directions.

- Drain and toss with the oil in the medium bowl or on a small rimmed baking sheet. Cover and refrigerate until cold.

- Once the noodles are chilled, whisk the sesame paste and furu until smooth in a medium-large sized bowl. Add the sesame oil, light soy sauce, sugar, black vinegar, dark soy sauce, Sichuan peppercorn oil, salt and Mayo. Whisk until all ingredients are incorporated.

- Begin adding the water in small splashes before whisking together until a silky and somewhat runny sauce forms. You may need more or less water than called for.

- Divide the noodles among bowls; drizzle the sesame sauce on top. Garnish with the thinly sliced scallions, chili oil, and crushed sesame seeds.


I know, that was a lot of ingredients that aren't exactly on your typical grocery store shelf. My apologies, but it is SO worth it!

The sesame paste you are looking for should be pure sesame seeds and not any other kind of seed/nut. You can order some off amazon, although if you really need to you can substitute with peanut butter. The sugar you later add may need to be tweaked depending on the brand of peanut butter you use.

Try to stay away from dried Asian noodles found in many local large grocery stores. They suck. Like, a lot. If you can't happen to find any thin Asian style noodles, spaghetti can be a substitute in a pinch.

If you don't have light and dark soy sauce, just use whatever normal soy sauce you may have on hand instead.

If you can't find black rice vinegar, you can substitute it for normal rice vinegar or rice wine vinegar.

The Sichuan peppercorn oil and fermented Tofu can be quite hard to find, so omit it if necessary. But I really do recommend it, as it adds a little bit of that signature funkiness iconic to East Asian dishes.

4 servings


20 minutes

active time

35 minutes

total time
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