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Taste the World: Crossing the Bridge Noodles (Guo Qiao Mi Xian)

crossing the bridge noodles

Experience what the world has to offer with a recipe from acclaimed Chef Victor Liong. As part of our Taste Dining at Home series, in partnership with Taste Festivals, we’ve invited globally renowned chefs to create recipes to help you make the most out of every day at home. 

To follow along with Chef Victor as he makes the full recipe, watch the video below. And to find Chef Dave’s chicken and artichoke soup recipe also featured in this video, click here.

chef victor liong
crossing the bridge noodles ingredients

chef victor liong and chef dave verheul

Crossing the Bridge Noodles (Guo Qiao Mi Xian)

By Chef Victor Liong

A note from Chef Victor:
This is a nice dish to share at home. It’s got quite a romantic story and is based around a rich Yunnanese chicken broth. It gets its name from a scholar’s wife who brought him lunch daily, which was chicken noodle soup. One spring day, the scholar noticed the soup was still piping hot after her trip across the bridge — it was because of a layer of fat that kept the heat in and the soup hot. This nourishing ritual sustained the scholar until he eventually made the high courts of the lands and this dish became a legend.

Yunnan, literally named “south of the clouds,” is a region of south China that borders Sichuan, Tibet, Myanmar, Laos and Vietnam. The flavors are fragrant, light and bold. The liberal use of acidity, heat, herbs and fermented and dried fish makes this a vibrant and diverse style of Chinese cuisine.

What You’ll Need (Serves 4)

For the soup:
4 L water
1 large chicken 
200 g pork bones
100 g smoked ham
40 g ginger, washed and kept whole
40 g spring onions
40 g brown onion, cut in half
10 g Sichuan peppercorns
10 g black peppercorns
10 g cinnamon
2 pieces star anise
1 short length lemongrass (optional)

For the garnish:
Meat components
1 chicken breast, sliced very thin
2 cooked chicken legs from the stock, shredded
4 quail eggs
50 g dried prawn floss (optional)

For the dipping sauce:
50 g spring onions, sliced
50 g garlic chives, sliced, salted lightly and water
squeezed out
4 g salt
2 g sugar
5 g chicken powder
20 g sesame oil
10 g ginger
30 g light soy sauce

For the roasted chili and Sichuan pepper oil:
100 g long, red chilies, chopped
100 g onion, finely diced
300 g vegetable oil
250 g Sichuan chili oil

Vegetable and noodle components:
100 g shiitake mushrooms, sliced
1 bunch mustard greens, leaves only
300 g medium-thickness rice noodles (mixian noodles)
200 g bean curd skin
100 g enoki mushrooms

Herbs and seasoning components:
½  bunch coriander
½  bunch garlic chives
½  bunch Thai basil
½ bunch Vietnamese mint
½ bunch spring onions
Fish sauce to taste
1 lime

How to Prepare It

Burn ginger and onion over a naked flame until charred. Place all the aromatic spices in a spice bag.

Separate the chicken legs off the chicken and the breasts of the chicken. Use the bones, skin and legs for the stock. Reserve the breasts.

Place all ingredients in a pot and bring to a boil. With a small skimmer, skim off scum for the first 10 minutes of the cooking. Reduce the heat and simmer for 3 hours.