Oodles and Oodles of Sesame Noodles

 Summer in the city: humidity radiates from everything, and somehow even the most powerful A/C doesn’t hold up to the pudding like coating that you acquire when you walk down the street in July.  So the last thing you want to do is cook - and the ease of calling your favorite Chinese restaurant and having cold peanut noodles  show up at your door twenty minutes later with a fortune cookie and orange is incredibly appealing. That velvety sauce and the crunch of the sesame seeds packs a serious hot weather punch. I would never say that this quirky homemade version is any better than the ones out of the paper carton, but what I will say is that these, made with tahini instead of peanut butter, make for an easy, delicious weeknight summer meal… especially if your A/C is working and you’ve got a nice cold glass (or two) of Pinot Grigio within your reach.

Quick Tip: If you have an H-Mart or any kind of Asian market nearby, you can get most of these ingredients at the fraction of the cost you’d pay at another grocer. Also, you’ll find so many new treats to try!

Ingredients

Noodles
1 lb Soba Noodles (you can use your favorite kind of noodles, most medium weight noodles work for this)
½ cup Tahini
¼ cup Soy Sauce
1 TBSP ginger, minced (about an inch)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 small pickling cucumbers, julienned
4 radishes, sliced
Sesame seeds for sprinkling
4 green onions, sliced
Sesame oil to prevent sticking.

Chicken
1 lb skin on chicken breasts (without skin if you must)
2 TBSP brown sugar
2 TBSP miso paste
2 TBSP  sesame oil
1 TBSP ginger, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Mix brown sugar, miso paste, sesame oil, ginger and garlic and coat your chicken. Cover and place in the refrigerator for 20 minutes while you cook your noodles.
  3. Cook noodles according to package directions, drain, rinse and lightly oil to prevent sticking.
  4. In a large bowl, mix tahini, soy sauce, ginger, garlic and green onions, add noodles and toss until coated. Let sit.
  5. Take chicken out of refrigerator, pat off any excess marinade and get ready for a whole lot of delight.
  6. Get a cast iron pan nice and hot. Put your chicken, skin down, into the pan. The skin will render so you can cook the chicken in its own fat. (If you don’t have skin, you’ll need a bit of oil for the pan.)
  7. Cook on high heat for about 5 minutes and flip. CAREFULLY place HOT pan in hot oven. Cook for 15 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. Remove pan carefully and let chicken sit for a few moments.
  8. In a bowl, layer noodles, chicken, radishes, cucumbers and sesame seeds.

The heat of the summer always reminds me of the music of my adolescence, which still sounds best, volume up, windows down.

Ten Minutes - The Get Up Kids
Holly Hox, Forget Me Nots - Saves the Day
Nothing Better - The Postal Service
Everything is Alright - Motion City Soundtrack
Melrose Diner - The Wonder Years
New Jersey Shore - The Promise Ring
You’re So Last Summer - Taking Back Sunday
San Dimas High School Football Rules - The Ataris
Dark Blue - Jack’s Mannequin
Soco Amaretto Lime - Brand New

For more hot weather tracks, check out our new Sippin’ on Summer playlist on Pandora!