Peanut noodles are often found on the appetizer menu of Chinese restaurants. But add cooked chicken and vegetables and you have a pasta salad Chinese style.
- Yield: 4 Servings
- ¾ pound boneless, skinless chicken breast
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 piece fresh ginger (1 inch long), sliced
- 6 tablespoons Chinese rice wine vinegar
- 1 pound fresh Chinese egg noodles or ¾ pound dried vermicelli
- 2 tablespoons Asian sesame oil
- ¼ cup smooth peanut butter
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce, or more to taste
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1–2 teaspoons Chinese chili paste with garlic, or more to taste
- 2 tablespoons sugar, or more to taste
- 1 English (hot house) cucumber, julienned
- 1 carrot, julienned
- 1 cup julienned scallions (white and tender green parts)
How to Make It
- Place the chicken in a medium saucepan and cover with water. Add the garlic, ginger, and 4 tablespoons of the rice vinegar. Bring just to a boil, lower the heat, and poach the chicken in barely simmering water until firm and white throughout, about 15 minutes. Cool in the cooking liquid.
- Meanwhile, cook the noodles according to the package directions until tender but firm to the bite, 2 to 3 minutes for fresh, about 5 minutes for dried. Drain and rinse with cold water. Toss with 1 tablespoon of the sesame oil.
- In a blender, combine the peanut butter with ½ cup of the chicken-cooking liquid. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar, the remaining 1 tablespoon sesame oil, the soy sauce, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, 1 teaspoon of the chili paste, and sugar. Blend well. Dip a noodle in the sauce to taste for seasoning, and add more chili paste, soy sauce, or vinegar as desired.
- Remove the chicken from the cooking liquid and julienne. (The chicken, noodles, and dressing can be refrigerated in separate containers for several hours at this point. Bring to room temperature before proceeding.)
- Combine the chicken, noodles, and dressing in a large salad bowl. Toss well. Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed. Arrange the cucumber, carrot, and scallions on top and serve.