Cold Noodle Salad with Sesame Sauce
Great Wall, Florence, MA
- 1 lb egg noodles
- ½ medium carrot
- ½ medium onion
- 10 snow peas
- Handful of bean sprouts
- 5 to 6 garlic cloves
- 1 cup (8 oz) peanut butter
- Pinch of salt
- 8 oz water
- 1 tsp vinegar
- ¾ tsp Oriental powdered mustard
- ¼ cup sugar
- 2 tsp sesame oil
- 2 tsp sesame paste
- 1 Tbsp sesame seeds, toasted
In a large saucepan boil noodles in water, to cover, about 5 minutes. Rinse with cold water and drain.
Thinly shred the carrots, onions, and snow peas. Add vegetables and bean sprouts to a pot of boiling water and blanch for less than 1 minute. Drain, and place vegetables in a bowl of cold water. Drain again, and pat dry.
For the sauce, mix together garlic, peanut butter, salt, vinegar, mustard, sugar, sesame oil and paste in a large bowl. Toss mixture with noodles.
To serve, arrange noodles on a plate and top with vegetables. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.
Recommended wine/beer for Cold Noodle Salad with Sesame Sauce:
Hou Hou Shu Sparkling Saké [Okayama, Japan]
Sparkling Saké is a relatively recent arrival to the American market, and it seems bent on making up for lost time. As with all Sakés, sparkling Saké begins its life from milled rice grains whose core starches are converted into fermentable sugars. At the conclusion of this primary fermentation, the Saké is bottled and encouraged to undergo a secondary fermentation, the result of which is effervescence. If this sounds familiar, it is because it is not unlike what happens in the production of Champagne. There are some notable differences to be sure. For one thing, sparkling Saké tilts the scales at a bantam weight 6% alcohol! Secondly, sparkling Saké is intentionally cloudy because the sediment produced during the secondary fermentation is not expelled [label directions even encourage gently shaking the bottle prior to its opening]. Lastly, it is quite frankly a tad sweet for those of us weaned on Brut Champagne. All the same, because Hou Hou Shu is light in body, effervescent and best served chilled, our perception of its sweetness is diminished. If you prefer your Saké to appear crystalline pure, you need merely stand it upright long enough for gravity to work its magic. You could then carefully pour the sparkling Saké leaving the sediment behind. Hou Hou Shu is not only a novel way to start an Asian dinner, it is also exactly what is called for as a counterpoint to sesame.