Liang Pi at Xi'an Famous Foods - NYC

I spent last summer living in Shanghai and became addicted to liang pi, a cold noodle dish typically mixed with tofu, cucumbers, bean sprouts and chilli sauce.  I ate this for lunch almost every other day and never got sick of it.  In the 20 years that I've been living in this country, I don't think I have ever seen liang pi served that way, anywhere.  Until NOW!
Xi'an Famous Foods is a small restaurant/take out joint that is blowing up the NYC food scene. Originally started in Flushing, new locations are now open in both Chinatown and East Village.  Read the NY Times review here: http://dinersjournal.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/12/31/recently-opened-xian-famous-foods-in-chinatown/
But seriously....look at this! 


And this!

Ah... just like China, where menus are just pictures displayed proudly on the walls.  What you see is what you get and this is how I like it.

Liang pi is a cold noodle dish that's made with wheat or rice flour.  My family actually makes a different version using mung bean powder, and it's quite delicious as well.  But using wheat or rice flour makes the noodle chewier.  At Xi'an, they seem to use wheat flour and the dish pictured above is actually made with spinach too, a nice touch!  The noodles are tossed with a variety of veggies (usually served sans meat), and then the sauce... ohhh the sauce.  I don't know what these guys put in their sauce but in china it is a combination of: vinegar, garlic, sugar and sesame oil and chili oil.  It is the PERFECT combination of refreshment and flavor, which is exactly what we all need when during a summertime heat wave.

Xi'an Famous Foods is also known for it's lamb cumin burger served on a flat roll and I can't wait to go back and try it!  A little sneak peak perhaps?   http://www.xianfoods.com/menu.php

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