Lately, I’ve been in a bit of a cooking slump. I don’t know what it is—maybe the weather? First, there was the mustard/panko chicken that should have been wonderful but will heretofore be known in the house as “the yucky chicken”. And close on its heels came the spicy mac and cheese that should have been a winner but was so meh and is now known as “the yucky pasta that goes with the yucky chicken”. And it was capped just a couple of days ago with the creme fraiche, roasted butternut squash, caramelized onion and fontina topped Grandma’s-style pizza I concocted that should have been fantastic but turned out to be overly doughy and unpleasantly heavy. My poor family! Hopefully, I’ve hit bottom and a new cycle of kitchen splendor is about to usher itself in. If I can use this Sesame Noodles with Peanut Sauce and Veggies as an indicator, looks like I’m headed in the right direction! Whew!
We are huge fans of cold sesame noodles but due to the obvious carb factor, we don’t indulge too often, so when we do, they had better be super duper special. Luckily, these really, really are. I already have another recipe for them on the site that is more like the traditional Chinese restaurant appetizer and you should totally try them when you have the chance, but if you’re looking for a more balanced veggie/pasta experience, these are going to make you very happy and a lot less guilty.
That’s ‘cause they’re full of good stuff like radishes, snow peas and red bell pepper. So with every bite you get the satisfying, comforting chewiness of the noodles and the crunch of fresh veggies, all coated in that wonderful but not overly heavy peanutty sauce. So much color, flavor and crunch!
Finally, a hit! Let’s keep our fingers crossed that it’s a sign of things to come. Happy slurping!
Sesame Noodles with Peanut Sauce and Veggies
Makes 6 servings
Prep Time: Under 1 hour
6 tablespoons fresh lime juice (about 3 limes)
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup peanut butter
6 tablespoons tahini
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
Salt and pepper
8 ounces snow peas, strings removed and cut in half
1 red bell pepper, seeded and cut into thin strips
5-6 radishes, trimmed, halved and sliced thinly
1 pound Chinese noodles
1. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Meanwhile, place lme juice, garlic, peanut butter, tahini, soy sauce, honey, sesame oil and a generous pinch of salt in a medium bowl and whisk together well. It will be thick. Slowly whisk in hot water, a little at a time, until the mixture thins out and becomes like the consistency of heavy cream. Set aside.
2. Add the noodles to the boiling water and cook, stirring often, for a few minutes, until al dente. Drain in a colander and rinse with cold water. Pat dry a bit.
3. Place noodles in a large bowl. Add veggies and peanut sauce. Toss well to combine. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately or cover and chill. This will last for several days in the fridge and can be reheated in the microwave or eaten cold.
Note: Recipe adapted from Dinner Illustrated by America’s Test Kitchen. I tinkered with proportions and will continue to experiment with different veggies and maybe even add chicken to make it more of a meal.