So I was relieved when a friend in Beijing told me that I need not worry about Yunnan--the rice noodles here were different! I could expect chewy rice noodles here, rice noodles that feel like a meal and not just a way to fill your stomach. She was right. Two of the main kinds of rice noodles here, ersi and erkuai, have a texture closer to mochi, the Japanese glutinous rice dessert, than to vermicelli.
Unfortunately, I'm still not the biggest fan. I guess it's not just about texture. The best thing about ersi and erkuai is getting to order them, which makes me feel like a pirate (er in Chinese is pronounced, roughly, arrrrrrr).
Here are some stirfried ersi from my local noodle shop, along with my single favorite thing about Kunming--the fact that you can get fresh watermelon juice for $.75 everywhere you go:
And here is a shot of the noodle shop:
Anyone else share my rice-noodle aversion?