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Other Asian Noodles


agar agar noodles  Notes:  These are strips of agar agar gelatin, which are usually served cold in a salad.  Before using, soak them in boiling water until they're soft.  Substitutes:  bean threads

arrowroot vermicelli  Notes:  These slender white Asian noodles are made from arrowroot starch.  They resemble bean threads.  Substitutes:  bean threads

bean curd skin noodles  Notes:  These Chinese noodles are made from yuba, the skin that forms on soy milk when it's heated.  They're chewy and very nutritious.  Substitutes:  yuba 

bean threads = cellophane noodles = mung  bean threads = bai fun = translucent noodles = shining noodles = slippery noodles = peastarch noodles = powdered silk noodles = saifun = sai fun = silver noodles = Chinese vermicelli = transparent noodles = fen szu = fen si = fan si = fun see = glass noodles = crystal noodles = jelly noodles = transparent vermicelli = soo hoon (Cantonese) = sohoon (Cantonese) = su boon = tung boon = su un (Indonesian) = pancit sotanghon (Tagalog) = woon sen (Thai) = bun tau (Vietnamese) = bun tao (Vietnamese) = bean thread vermicelli = green bean thread noodles = invisible noodles = pekyasan = vermicelli noodles = tanghoon (Malaysia) = mung pea noodles    Notes:   These slender, gelatinous noodles are widely used throughout China and Southeast Asia.  They're made from mung beans and almost flavorless, though they readily absorb other flavors.   They're commonly used in soups, stir-fries, salads, desserts, and even drinks.  Before using, soak them in hot water until they're soft and transparent (about 15 minutes), then add them to boiling water and cook them for no more than a minute.  Rinse them in cold water and drain.  The dried noodles can also be deep fried to make a crunchy garnish or bed for sauces.    Substitutes:  harusame (a similar Japanese version) OR rice vermicelli (can also be deep fried) OR shirataki OR  rice sticks

cornstarch noodles = pancit luglug (Tagalog) = pancit lug-lug (Tagalog) Notes:  These Filipino noodles are made with cornstarch. Before using, soak them in hot water until they're soft.  Substitutes:  bean threads

harusame = Japanese vermicelli = harusame saifun = harusame sai fun   Pronunciation:  hah-roo-SAH-may  Notes:  These thin, translucent Japanese noodles are typically made with potato, sweet potato, rice, or mung bean starch. They're similar to Chinese bean threads.   Substitutes:  bean threads (This is a very close substitute.) OR vermicelli OR shirataki

Korean sweet potato vermicelli = Korean vermicelli = sweet potato vermicelli = dang myun = dangmyun = tang myun = tangmyun   Notes:  A Korean specialty, these long, chewy noodles are made with sweet potato starch.   Before using, soak them in hot water for about 10 minutes, then add them along with some broth to stir-fries.  Substitutes:  bean threads OR rice vermicelli OR harusame


Korean buckwheat noodles = naeng myun = naengmyon    Notes:   These Korean noodles are made with buckwheat flour and potato starch.  They're usually served cold, but sometimes added to soups.  Boil the noodles for about 3 to 4 minutes before using.   Substitutes:  soba (very similar) OR rice sticks

seaweed noodles = seaweed threads = Chinese seaweed noodles  Substitutes:  bean threads (shorter and thicker) OR vermicelli


shirataki = sirataki = ito konnyaku = yam noodles = devil's tongue noodles  Pronunciation:    she-rah-TAH-kee  Notes:   These Japanese noodles are a form of konnyaku, a rubbery, gelatinous substance derived from devil's tongue yams.  The noodles come in white or black versions; black is preferred for sukiyaki.  Look for them in Japanese markets, either in cans or fresh in plastic bags in the refrigerated section.  Drain and cook the noodles before using. Substitutes:  bean threads


soba = buckwheat noodles   Pronunciation:  SO-bah  Notes:   These chewy Japanese noodles are popular at soup counters in Tokyo.  They're made with a blend of wheat and buckwheat flours, the more buckwheat the better.  They're often sold fresh (called nama soba) in Japan, but foreigners usually have to settle for dried.  Soba comes in different widths and flavors, including  green cha soba = chasoba, which is flavored with green tea, and yamaimo soba, flavored with yams.  Cook them for about 3 minutes.   Substitutes:  Korean buckwheat noodles OR udon (thicker, different flavor) OR wholewheat pasta (linguine or spaghetti) OR linguine OR spaghetti


tapioca sticks = tapioca starch noodle = hu tieu bot loc  Notes:   Look for these noodles in Asian markets. Substitutes:  bean threads

Tientsin fen pi  Notes:   These thin round sheets resemble rice paper, but they're made with mung bean starch and used as noodles.  Before cooking, soak them in hot water until they're soft, then cut them into noodles.  Substitutes:  bean threads OR rice sticks

tofu noodles = soybean curd noodles = tofu shreds = gan si = beancurd noodles = bean curd noodles = soy noodles = soy vermicelli    Notes:   These chewy noodles look like a pack of rubber bands, but they're made from compressed tofu and packed with protein and nutrients.  They're usually served in salads, soups, or stir-fries.  Look for them in the refrigerated or frozen foods section of Asian markets.  Dried tofu noodles are also available; before using, soak them in water mixed with baking soda until they soften, then rinse.  Don't confuse these with bean curd skin noodles, which are darker and chewier.   Substitutes:  tofu (cut into small cubes)


Copyright 1996-2005  Lori Alden