Rice Noodle Bowl

What do you make for dinner when your apartment is hotter than a sweatshop but the thought of eating cereal and milk as a meal erodes your soul? Cold rice noodle bowl to the rescue! Full disclosure here – while this has the semblance of being a cool oven-free dinner, I did in fact turn on both my burner and oven to make this dish.  But, once those were turned off and I was sitting pants-less  in front of the AC unit – it was cool sailing! Aside from the oven usage – this really is the perfect summer dish. The rice noodles keep things light, the mint, basil, and cilantro add a delicious herby-freshness and who doesn’t love a peanut sauce? All you need to do is cook the chicken and some noodles and it’s din din time.

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IMG_1893Rice Noodle Bowl 

Adapted from The New York Times

  • 6 boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 4 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1-inch chunk of ginger, peeled and minced
  • 2 tablespoons Asian fish sauce (I subbed worcestershire sauce)
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • tablespoons brown sugar
  • teaspoon chili garlic sauce
  • 8 ounces dried rice vermicelli 
  • 2 small cucumbers, cut in half moons
  • 1 medium carrot, cut in thin matchsticks
  • Small handful basil sprigs
  • Small handful mint sprigs
  • Small handful cilantro sprigs
  • 4 tablespoons slivered scallions
  • ¼ cup chopped peanuts 
  • Lime wedges

For Peanut Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons Asian fish sauce (again I subbed worcestershire sauce)
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 1-inch chunk ginger, peeled and minced
  • 4 tablespoons natural unsalted peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • Pinch red pepper flakes

Puree the garlic, ginger, fish sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil, brown sugar and chili garlic sauce in a small food processor. Place chicken thighs in a Ziploc bag and pour the marinade over the chicken and toss to coat. Let the chicken marinate in the fridge for at least 15 minutes.

Whisk together the ingredients for the peanut sauce in a small bowl.

Cook vermicelli according to package directions. Drain and rinse with cold water. Set aside.

Grill or broil the chicken thighs until browned. About 5-6 minutes a side. Let cool and slice into strips. Reserve the pan juices.

In a small bowl,  place a nice handful of noodles in the bottom of your bowl. Spoon some of the chicken pan drippings on top of the noodles. Top with cucumbers, carrots, and sliced chicken. Add the basil, mint and cilantro. Drizzle peanut sauce on top of everything. Sprinkle with the scallions and crushed peanuts. Serve with lime wedges.

 

Big Bowl Asian Chicken Soup

Chinese Meatball Soup, I must confess something, I have a crush on another asian noodle soup. His name is Big Bowl and he’s got bigger, sexier soba noodles, white meat chicken chunks, and exotic shiitake mushrooms. He’s also got napa cabbage, snow peas and a trust fund. I think we should still be friends and I intend to make you again, but right now I’m going to see where things go with Big Bowl.  Delicious and healthy, this big bowl soup is the perfect one pot weeknight meal, ready in under 30 minutes. It’s fast, easy, and so tasty. You could easily make this soup vegetarian by subbing tofu for the chicken or just sticking with straight veggies. With more snow forecasted for this week, I highly recommend giving this soup a try. Let us rejoice, this soup is the polar vortex antidote our nation’s been waiting for!

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Big Bowl Asian Chicken Soup

Based on this recipe from Epicurious, recommended by my wise brother, Andrew.

1 lb boneless skinless chicken breastspicstitch-6

3 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp sesame oil

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes

1 cup shitake mushrooms, sliced

4 cups chicken broth

1/4 tsp ground ginger

a few shakes of ground cardamom

1 tbsp rice vinegar

2 cups of shredded napa cabbage

1/4 cup cilantro, chopped

1/3 cup shredded carrots

1 cup snow peas

1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds

8 oz soba noodles, cooked according to package directions

sliced green onions for garnish

Slice the chicken breasts into bite size pieces. In a small bowl combine the chicken and soy sauce. Heat oil over medium high heat and add the chicken, minced garlic and red pepper flakes; cook for 2 minutes stirring often. Add the broth, ginger, cardamom, and vinegar; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low and let the soup simmer until chicken is cooked. Stir in cabbage, snow peas, carrots, sesame seeds and cilantro and cook for 2 more minutes. Place a good amount of soba noodles in your bowl and ladle on the deliciousness. Garnish with green onion.

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Slurp up the goodness, husband.

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