Friday, January 11, 2013

Sesame Peanut Noodles with Beets

Hi everyone! I'm back from Vietnam, and I'm glad to see that you have all been prolific while I've been gone. It's great to be able to track everyone's holiday through recipes : ) A picture of Vietnam from one of our hotels in Hoi An:

Kelly plus Nick drinking a coconut in my grandparents' house:

And a really pretty beach in a little cove on Paradise island:

Anyways, I've been craving these simple peanut noodles. This meal is based off of a recipe from Epicurious but I use different vegetables and add fish sauce (of course).

Top photo is with wheat noodles. Bottom is with rice noodles and some coconut milk instead of pasta water.

For peanut dressing
  • 1 cup smooth peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons chopped peeled fresh ginger
  • 5 medium garlic cloves, chopped
  • 4 tablespoons rice wine vinegar or less fresh lime 
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  • 4 teaspoons honey
  • 1 squirt of Sriracha sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 2/3 cup hot pasta water reserved from cooking the pasta
  • Black sesame seeds, to top
For noodle salad
  • 1 lb dried whole wheat linguine or rice noodles (pad Thai)
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 4 medium beets, cut into 1/8-inch-thick strips
  • 1 bunch of beet greens, cut into thin strips
  • 5 carrots, cut into 1/8-inch-thick strips

To make the sauce, just put all the ingredients in the food processor for the peanut sauce part minus the water. Blend until the mixture is smooth and season with black pepper or more hot sauce to taste.

Chop the vegetables.

Saute the onions, beets, and carrots until softened. I like the vegetables to be a little crunchy and you could even eat everything raw if the beets are small.

Cook the noodles until done, about 12 minutes. I like my noodles to still be chewy, so I cook them for less time. An alternative would be to use rice noodles.

Add the peanut sauce to the vegetables along the with extra pasta water and stir to incorporate.

Then toss in the noodles right before serving. This is great hot or cold. The beets turn everything pink! I like to garnish the pasta with some fresh parsley.

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