As your thoughts shift to swimming pools, frozen cocktails and other ways to stay cool this summer, don't forget the cold noodle dishes served at Asian restaurants like Tei An, La Han Bat and more around Dallas. Cold noodles are a great way to fill up without heating up, and some dishes add spicy flavors that will make you sweat, which can have an extra cooling effect. Here are a few of my favorites around town. As the temperatures continue to climb this summer, you'd do well to seek them out.
Monkey King Noodle Co.'s cold noodles (pictured above)
Back in November we noted the chicken noodle soup served at Monkey King was one of the best treatments for a nasty cold. In summer, though, a cold version is offered without broth, with the same pulled chicken dressed in a tangy garlic vinaigrette. These noodles may not be ice cold like some of the other versions in this list, but they're still better than a belly full of hot broth in August.
LA Han Bat noodles with the hottest sauce
This dish can be hard to get your head around. Cradle the metal bowl with your hands and you'll confirm this dish is ice cold. Take one bite, and your brain will have to process some other sensory information — these noodles are seriously spicy. The menu doesn't lie when it warns these noodles come swimming in the hottest sauce, and your waitress will warn you for a reason. The spiciness may not be crippling, but it will keep you in check. Eat this too fast and you'll leave with beads of sweat on your brow.
Ten's Hiyashi Chuka
What's a noodle list without some ramen? This dish takes your favorite bowl of alkali noodles, tosses the broth and brings everything down to a cold chill. Even that barely cooked egg that will explode when your chopsticks touch it is chilly, making this bowl a go-to meal on the hottest summer days.
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Tei-An's soba and soba ice cream
Cold soba in the summer at Tei An are a given. The restaurant is built on the noodles made from buckwheat flour, and a visit here that misses them is always a mistake. But don't forget about the soba ice cream for a chilling one-two punch. It's served with kuromitsu (Japanese sugar syrup) black honey that you'll want to scrape from your plate with your spoon when you're done. It doesn't matter how hot it is outside when you indulge soba two ways at Tei-an. Actually, nothing else matters at all.