Monday, March 12, 2007

Project Chicken Soup Recap

As if 8 am on a Sunday isn't early enough, it had to be the first day of Daylight Savings Time too. But we pushed through the grogginess, I, my mom, and Ramos and Rachel, who graciously volunteered to help out, and really enjoyed the experience. As usual, everyone was wowed by the giant vats of soup, overgrowned mixers, and cakes made with 40 eggs and 26 cups of flour. And as usual, the food was delicious: turkey meatloaf, teriyaki chicken with sauce from scratch, a gorgeous pear cake with tons of fresh pears that I can't wait to replicate at home, and sesame noodles, which I did replicate at home, just last night.

Thanks again to Erin and Rach for coming along, and for those who don't know about this great organization, check it.

Asian Noodle Salad with Sesame Peanut Dressing

While I didn't have the magical slicer/shredder at home that you just throw vegetables at and they come out the other end perfectly sliced/shredded, the labor was worth it -- lots of vegetables make this a healthy summer dinner (I know, it's March. But really, it's summer.), and the dressing is slippery and nutty and yum.

6 ounces dried long thing noodles (I used chow mein noodles, but soba, somen, or even spaghetti would work fine)
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
1 1/2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
2 teaspoons honey
2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter, at room temperature (I use the peanuts-only kind)
1-inch-long knob fresh ginger, peeled and grated
crushed red pepper, to taste
4-6 green onions, thinly sliced
1 small head cabbage, shredded
2 carrots, shredded
1 English cucumber, peeled
1 red bell pepper, finely diced
1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds

Prepare noodles, according to package directions. Meanwhile, make dressing. In a large salad bowl, whisk together one teaspoon sesame oil, soy sauce, honey, and peanut butter. Add ginger, crushed red pepper, and green onions. Stir to combine. Drain and rinse noodles under cold water. Toss in colander with remaining teaspoon of sesame oil.

Add cabbage, carrots, cucumbers, and bell pepper to salad bowl and toss to combine with dressing. Add noodles, and toss to incorporate all ingredients together. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.

Serves 3-4 as a main course