Food by VICE

Sesame Noodles Recipe (Majiang Mian)

This classic Chinese dish is perfect served hot or cold.

by Carolyn Phillips
Oct 23 2017, 11:00pm

Photo by Liz Barclay

Servings: 4
Prep: 15 minutes
Total: 25 minutes


2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil or chilli oil (plus goop at the bottom of the bottle.)
2 tablespoons toasted sesame paste
2 tablespoons peanut butter
1 garlic clove finely chopped
1 green onion, trimmed and finely chopped, white and green in separate piles
1 ½ tablespoons regular soy sauce
1 tablespoon dark vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar
8 ounces dried wheat noodles of any kind


1. First make the sauce: in a wok, mix together the sesame oil (or chilli oil and goop), sesame paste, peanut butter, garlic, onion whites, soy sauce, vinegar and sugar. Heat this until slowly over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until sauce is slightly cooked through, then taste and adjust seasoning.

2. Bring a saucepan filled with water to a boil, add the wheat noodles, and cook until barely done. Scoop out the noodles and add to the wok, reserving the pasta water. Toss the noodles until they are all well coated adding some of the pasta water as needed to keep them from clumping up. (To be honest it will take more water than you would expect.) Divide the noodles among the bowls, sprinkle on the onion greens, and serve hot. I like to offer small bowls of the cooking water on the side as a simple soup that can be used to thin down the sauce as needed.