I recently had my fabulous friends Holley and Lori stay over for a few days while they were house-hunting in the area.
Since I was working all day, but still wanted to fix a decent, but quick, supper for my family AND my guests, I turned to one of our favorite recipes. Peanut Noodles, of course! Fortunately, I'd just gotten my recent delivery of organic veggies from Full Circle Farms, so I had a rainbow of veggie options to add! (By the way, if you've never tried a CSA or organic farm delivery service, check these guys out! It actually works out cheaper for me than driving around to several supermarkets looking for organic produce! And so SUPER convenient!)
Anyway - This is my go-to Peanut Sauce, easy to throw together and it works well for so many different recipes. Here, I just stirred it into noodles, added some stir-fried tofu and veggies and PRESTO-MAGIC - an easy, tasty, complete meal! MUCH, much simpler than my long, wordy recipe appears!
AND STIR FRY VEGGIES
1/2 cup vegetable or veggie-chicken-style broth
1 1/2 tablespoons finely grated fresh ginger root (substituting dry ground ginger will NOT work well here)
3 tablespoons soy sauce
3 tablespoons peanut butter (creamy, chunky, plain, natural style, whatever)
1 1/2 tablespoons brown rice syrup, honey, maple syrup or agave nectar (or corn syrup works in a pinch)
1 - 2 teaspoons hot chile sauce or paste (like Schiracha - from an Asian market or well-stocked supermarket) or 1/4 teaspoon cayenne or hot pepper flakes
3 cloves garlic, pressed thru garlic press
1/2 tsp. fresh lime juice or red wine vinegar
10 - 12 ounces noodles of your choice: Udon noodles, Buckwheat Soba noodles, thin vermicelli noodles or rice sticks (like for Pad Thai), or just use plain ol' unseasoned Ramen noodles or whole wheat spaghetti!!
*ADD INS (as few or as many as you like - your preference - perfect for picky kids who only want certain veggies):
-- Lightly stir-fried, still crispy veggies - carrots, peapods, peppers, broccoli, whatever
-- Finely shredded cabbage, either slightly stir-fried or raw
-- chopped fresh spinach or kale
-- fresh bean sprouts
-- toasted cashews or sunflower seeds
-- cubes of cooked butternut or other winter squash
-- raisins (yes, raisins)
-- frozen peas, slightly thawed
-- favorite seitan or gluten product, cubed and browned a bit
-- chick peas/garbanzos
-- cubes of browned tempeh
-- crispy cubes of browned tofu OR leftover tofu scramble
TOPPINGS/GARNISHES (as preferred):
-- 1/4 cup chopped green onions
-- several teaspoons of toasted sesame seeds
-- 1/4 cup chopped peanuts or cashews
-- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
-- 1/2 cup chopped mint
-- 1/4 cup finely julienned radishes
Start noodles cooking and then make sauce.
SAUCE: Combine broth, ginger, soy sauce, peanut butter, syrup, chili paste, lime juice and garlic in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring until peanut butter melts and is heated through. Set aside.
NOODLES: Cook whatever noodles you've chosen according to their package directions. Drain, toss with a teaspoon of peanut oil.
While still hot, stir in peanut sauce.
At this point, GET CREATIVE!!
Prepare whatever optional "Add-In" ingredients sound good, depending on who is in charge of making the dish. Stir suggested "Add-ins" into hot sauce and noodles just to heat through. Adjust salt, pepper and sweetener if needed, to taste.
Garnish with "Toppings".
It's these garnishes that REALLY make this dish special!
It's that easy!!
Leftovers are good either hot OR cold. My daughter LOVES to take them in her lunch.