Saturday, February 24, 2024

a twist on an awesome recipe

The recipe for "peanut-butter noodles" isn't supposed to be anything authentic, and there are versions of this concept all over YouTube. Some involve ramen; others use udon or other pasta, even Western pasta. The recipe I (mostly) followed comes from Andy of Andy Cooks, a popular YouTube channel whose host is well known for trying to respect every culture's cooking instead of "putting his own twist" on the food (the thing that Uncle Roger is constantly blaming Jamie Oliver for). That said, I put my own twist on Andy's peanut-butter noodles recipe, adding proteins in the form of shrimp and chicken, plus a sprig of cilantro purchased from my building's B1-level grocery. And it was great! Andy had been aiming to make a snack; I decided to make a full meal, with the cilantro pulling the meal more explicitly in a SE Asian direction. I used chunky peanut butter, too.

The peanut sauce was a little bit thick and salty; next time, I'll add some milk to smooth and thin it out a bit. Maybe some lime juice as well. Otherwise, it had great depth of flavor, and everything else was spot-on. This kind of recipe is easy enough to make on your own. In fact, since I've made my own peanut sauce before, I might try this again sometime, but without a recipe. The nice thing about the frozen udong (udon) I'd used is that, once you get the water boiling, it cooks up in 2-3 minutes. So even with the added proteins (which are easy enough to prep), the whole thing doesn't take too long to come together.

ADDENDUM: I did have to prep by buying some esoteric ingredients, though: so-called "chili crisp" and something called "black vinegar." Both were available as next-day deliveries via Coupang, so I didn't have to resort to weird substitutes.

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