Homemade Chinese Alkaline Water Noodles

Alkaline Water Noodles

Alkaline Noodles can be used to made Chinese Cold Noodles, Hot Dry Noodles.

The alkaline causes the flour to swell and make softer fuller noodles.

The quality of wheat is affected by where it is grown. In northern China, the climate is dryer with large temperature differences between day and night, which produces wheat with a high protein content and therefore strong gluten.

In the south, where the climate is humid, there is not much temperature difference between day and night, and so the wheat protein content is low, and gluten is weak.

To make up for this deficiency, people in the south mixed their flour with alkaline water to strengthen the protein molecules’ binding capacity. This also improves the texture and toughness of the noodles.

Now, alkaline water not only makes up for the lack of gluten, but alkaline water itself has become a unique flavor of many local variations on noodles. It also gives the noodles a lovely golden color.Alkaline Water

Flavonoids and some organic acids are added to flour and when combined with the starch, will produce white flour and thus white noodles.

Adding alkaline water increases the PH level, and counteracts the effect of the flavonoids, organic acids and starch bringing out the natural yellow of the wheat flour.

The composition of alkaline water differs from brand to brand. You should look for a brand that contains 74.5g of potassium carbonate and 3.4g of sodium carbonate to 100 ml water.

Ingredients for Alkaline Noodles (serves 10)

  • 35 ml alkaline water (Lye Water or Kansui)
  • 400 ml water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 kg high gluten flour

How to Make Alkaline Noodles

Step 1Alkaline Water Noodles step1

Make the liquid for the dough. Take a large bowl and add 35 ml of alkaline water.

Step 2Alkaline Water Noodles step2

Add 400 ml of water and 1 teaspoon of salt, and stir well.

Step 3Alkaline Water Noodles step3

Now let’s talk about mixing options. You can mix the flour and liquid together by hand which is simple enough: start with putting the flour in the bowl first, and slowly pour in the liquid while you mix quickly.

This is called the “bread water” approach. This method produces a nice soft dough, requiring less effort when kneading.

However, a mixer is quicker and more efficient.

You might be tempted to use the dough hook, but trust me, the paddle gives a better result in this instance. Put 1 kg of flour into the bowl and start the machine in low gear. Add the liquid slowly, paying attention to controlling your pouring speed so that the liquid does not pool in the bowl.

As the dough combines, the resistance will increase. The paddle will not knead the dough, and the dough hook will not do an adequate job. Take the dough out and knead it by hand.

Step 4Alkaline Water Noodles step4

The amount of dough is too much to work with in one lot, so roughly press the dough together and cut it in half. Kneading two smaller lumps of dough will be much easier than one large one.

Step 5Alkaline Water Noodles step5

Mold each lump into a cylindrical shape, wrap in plastic wrap, and allow to rest for 5 minutes.

Step 6Alkaline Water Noodles step6

Rolling out the dough will be tough at first. Using a small rolling pin will give you more leverage and make the job easier.

Step 7Alkaline Water Noodles step7

Roll the dough out flat along its length to a thickness of about ½ in. Roll it into a cylinder shape again, and roll out flat. Repeat this roll out/roll up process five times. After this, the dough will be soft and smooth, and the gluten fully developed.

Step 8Alkaline Water Noodles step8

Divide each lump into five equal portions, giving a total of 10 portions. Wrap each in plastic wrap to prevent them drying out.

Step 9Alkaline Water Noodles step9

Take one dough portion and roll it out thin, in preparation for putting through the pasta machine. Because the dough is tough, it needs to be quite thin so as not to damage the machine.

Step 10Alkaline Water Noodles step10

Roll the piece of dough through the pasta machine. Each time you pass it through reduce the machine’s thickness setting.

Step 11Alkaline Water Noodles step11

Each time you roll the dough through the machine, it will most likely crack along the edges due to the irregularity of the original shape until it gets to thickness setting 6. To smooth the dough, lay it on your work surface and fold the edges to the middle to get straight edges.

Step 12Alkaline Water Noodles step12

Adjust the thickness of the pasta machine to 3, pass the folded dough through once. Reduce the thickness to 5 and pass it through again.

Step 13Alkaline Water Noodles step13

This time, fold the strip of dough in half, reducing its length, and pass it through the machine on thickness setting 3. Pass it through again at setting 6 and you will now have a strip with nice straight edges ready to be cut into noodles.

Step 14Alkaline Water Noodles step14

Pasta machines generally come with two cutting widths, 6.6 mm and 1.6 mm. A thickness setting of 6 and cutter setting of 1.6 will produce square shaped noodles, which is the typical shape for alkaline noodles.
Step 15Alkaline Water Noodles step15

When the dough is almost through, support the noodles in your palm, so they don’t end up a tangled pile. Gather up the noodles and put aside. Because alkaline dough is relatively hard, you should find it doesn’t stick to the machine, and you should not need any flour to prevent sticking.

2 thoughts on “Homemade Chinese Alkaline Water Noodles”

  1. I wanted to thank you for this great read!! I definitely enjoying every little bit of it I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post…

  2. Will these come out springy? Like the prepackaged wonton noodles you can buy? Idk how to descrive wonton noodles but one reason I love them is just that springyness that they have, as if they’re kinda dry even when cooked all the way through

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