Monday, June 25, 2012

Chinese Five Spice Veggies and Noodles


On our honeymoon in Mexico two years ago, we went to a Japanese restaurant at our resort and had an amazing dish with shrimp and five spice soba noodles.  We liked it so much that I decided when we got home I needed to start cooking with five spice powder.  (This delicious spice is a combination of Szechuan pepper, star anise, cloves, cinnamon, and fennel, and can be found in most grocery stores in the spice aisle.)  I quickly found this recipe on Serious Eats and we have made it many times since then! 

In the past, I made it with soba noodles or whole wheat spaghetti noodles, but since eating gluten free, I like to use Tinkyada brown rice fettucini style noodles.  We like a higher ratio of veggies to noodles in this dish, so I’ve adapted the original accordingly.  I also reduced the oil drastically from the original recipe because I don’t find it adds anything except unnecessary fat and calories.  Some of the ingredients in this recipe might not be ones you normally stock in your pantry, but they are all easy to find at the grocery store.  I buy my pasta, sesame oil, sriracha, ginger (the Gourmet Garden kind in the tube), and Chinese five spice powder at Meijer, but I think Giant Eagle and Kroger carry all of these items as well.  Also, this is very quick to prepare if you buy precut broccoli, bagged shredded carrots, and bagged shredded green cabbage. 

We like to serve this with chicken or shrimp sautéed in a little bit of olive oil, salt, and pepper.  It is a perfect, quick meal and tastes every bit as delicious as any Chinese take-out you will order, but is MUCH healthier!  It is also delicious as leftovers.  But then again, we love everything as leftovers! 


Chinese Five Spice Veggies and Noodles

Adapted from Serious Eats

4 oz. brown rice pasta 
1 T sesame oil
1 T sriracha
2 tsp fresh ginger, minced OR Gourmet Garden Ginger 
1 T Chinese five spice powder
1 T olive oil
1 onion, chopped
8 cloves garlic, minced
2 large bunches of broccoli, stems removed and chopped
2 c shredded carrots
2 c shredded green cabbage
1 ½ c vegetable broth
6 scallions, chopped

First, cut up your onion, garlic, broccoli, and scallions and have them ready.  Mix up the sauce by combining sesame oil, sriracha, garlic, ginger, and five spice powder in a small bowl.  Then start boiling the water for the noodles.  Next, heat olive oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat.  (You will want to use the biggest pan you have because you’ll be adding a lot of veggies to it!  If you don’t have a large skillet or wok, consider halving the recipe).  Once the oil is hot, add the chopped onion and cook, stirring frequently, until just beginning to brown.  Then add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.  (Meanwhile, keep an eye on the pot of water and add the noodles once it starts to boil.  Cook noodles according to package directions and drain when done).  Next, add broccoli, carrots, green cabbage, broth, and sauce (in that order).  Cook, stirring occasionally, until broccoli is soft.  Once the broccoli is soft, add the cooked noodles and scallions to the broccoli mixture.  Stir everything together and heat for 2-3 minutes more. 
Makes 4-6 servings. 

QUESTION OF THE DAY: Has a restaurant dish ever inspired you to cook something similar at home?  What did you have at the restaurant, and what did you make at home?  (Respond by posting a comment!)

3 comments:

  1. DELICIOUS! Looking forward to the leftovers already :)

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  2. I'm so glad you liked them! I agree they are super delicious. Serving them with tofu was also a really good idea!

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