Rouge & Blanc Beef Noodle Soup: Andre Chiang
On the nostalgic flavor of home
On the nostalgic flavor of home
Words & Photos: Andre Chiang @andrechiang_sg and RB Beef Noodle @rb.beefnoodle
“A childhood memory that I carried across the globe,
looking for the best alphabet to compose a new culinary vocabulary;
the pungency of the spiciness and the crystal-clear broth that holds a greenish pepper hint,
both reflects the original flavor of my identity;
and now, as I returned to my homeland, my dream is not simply to replicate the tradition,
but to recreate the tradition with a better understanding of
ingredients, culinary techniques, as well as the pride of our unique flavors.”
In the documentary Andre and his Olive Tree in 2020, Chef Andre Chiang made the last bowl of beef noodle soup before closing Restaurant Andre. That unforgettable nostalgic hometown feeling is one often associated with the dish, and one that the chef has been familiar with since he was a child. When "Andre's 100 Bowls of Rouge & Blanc Beef Noodles” launched in November 2022, Chiang transformed this particular feeling and memory into flavors to tell the story of what it felt like to be back home.
The chef and the team spent their time and effort to select and process their ingredients, repeatedly testing for parts, thickness, size, methods, cooking time, and even the subtleties of beef tongue’s muscle fiber. For beef tripe, Chiang specifically selects the honeycomb tripe, which can absorb the soup while still keeping the texture crispy and chewy.
The chef has high standards for charcoal grilling, insisting on using high cost Bincho charcoal from Japan to keep the firepower stable and even, so the umami flavor can be locked in with the light charcoal aroma. Because Bincho charcoal is higher grade, the cost doubles accordingly, which is the ultimate display of pursuing taste regardless of cost.
It was a big test and challenge for the team to miniaturize the production process. A slight difference in process might make a huge difference in taste. How to choose ingredients and how to cook them seems simple, but it is about hard work and experience. Taste comes from persistence in quality. The chef carefully plans to pack the soup base, uses exclusive ingredients and seasoning packets to maintain the best product quality in a convenient and simple way. Adopting rapid freezing technology has ensured product quality, quantity, and safety, so customers can easily make it no matter where they are.
Stewed with charcoal-grilled beef bones, top-quality beef tongue, special charcoal-grilled tendon heart, beef tendon, and honeycomb belly, this soup is then stewed with a unique smoky charcoal aroma and Da Hong Pao (Wuyi rock tea). Spicy beef oil and dozens of Sichuan spices are boiled to give the broth a rich color, then paired with Tainan sun-dried Guanmiao noodles to better absorb the rich soup base and highlight its bold spicy taste.
This soup is first stewed in the traditional Chinese style, then combined with Consommé, the French cooking method. The double application of Chinese and French clarification methods makes the taste more concentrated. Adding the soft fragrance of fresh rattan pepper and Japanese sake fully brings out the sweetness of the ingredients. The dish includes beef tongue, tendon heart, and beef tendon, with the addition of stewed oxtail that nicely pairs with freshly handmade thin noodles.
“Taste is like color,” Chiang explains. “The red soup, with its bold and unrestrained taste, represents our enthusiasm and friendliness; while the white soup, delicate and elegant in flavor, reminds us to keep our original heart and purity.”