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Sesame noodles and chicken
Note: This recipe is adapted from an America’s Test Kitchen recipe. The original recommends using chunky peanut butter in the sauce. But you can use what you prefer, whether it’s smooth, creamy, conventional or old-fashioned peanut butter. This dish could also work with sautéed shrimp or tofu instead of shredded chicken.
- ¼ cup sesame seeds
- ¼ cup peanut butter
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon of fresh minced ginger (fresh is best; if you used powdered, use only about 1/8 tablespoon)
- 5 tablespoons soy sauce (try to use low-sodium sauce)
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon Tabasco sauce (optional)
- 2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
- about 5 tablespoons of hot water
- 1 ½ pounds of boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
- 1 tablespoon of salt
- 12 ounces dried spaghetti or noodles of your choice
- 2 tablespoons of sesame oil
- 3 scallions, sliced
- 1 medium-sized carrot — grated
- Toast the sesame seeds in a skillet over medium heat, stirring frequently until golden — about 10 minutes. Put aside 1 tablespoon of the seeds in a small bowl – you’ll sprinkle them over your finished dish in a while.
- In a blender or food processor, puree the rest of the sesame seeds along with the peanut butter, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, vinegar, hot sauce (if using) and sugar. Puree until smooth.
- Continuing pureeing and add hot water 1 tablespoon at time until the sauce has the texture of heavy cream.
- Boil water over high heat for the pasta. Meanwhile, heat up the broiler, placing the rack about six inches from the broiler element.
- Spray your broiler pan with cooking spray, place chicken breasts on top, and broil the chicken until it’s lightly browned. Then flip the chicken over and continue to broil until the thickest part is no longer pink – about 6-8 minutes.
- Let the chicken sit for a few minutes. Then, shred it into small pieces.
- Add the noodles/spaghetti to the boiling water and boil until tender. Then drain the noodles, rinse with cool water, then drain again.
- Toss the noodles with sesame oil. Then add in all your ingredients — the shredded chicken (or shrimp, tofu or whatever you decided to use in this dish), scallions, grated carrots and sauce. Toss the mixture, then sprinkle the sesame seeds on top and serve.
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