Thai Style Sesame Peanut Noodles

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Thai Style Sesame Peanut Noodles

Thai Style Sesame Peanut Noodles

Let me begin by wishing everyone a “Happy New Year”!! I hope everyone has a joyous and prosperous 2017!!

I been away for quite a bit…….I kept putting if off because…in my opinion……I didn’t have the right recipe to come back with…..quite a bit of laziness was also involved!!!! Anyway, I never did make a dish spectacular enough for my…. comeback! That was also when I received a stern talking to from my sis ………her friends were asking why I’ve been missing for so long. I’m grounded enough to realize that food blogs are numerous and mine is not popular enough to be missed to a great extent. I started this blog to chronicle my culinary adventures and also as a cookbook for my kids. But that convo made me realize that I might have a few followers who might actually miss me!!! Thank you guys!!

My parents are visiting and so is my sis and her brood. My dad is turning 70 in march but school, work and other factors make it impossible for us to meet then so we made do and met during the holidays. Both of appa’s brothers who live in the US made it too. There are certain expectations associated with visiting my house…one of which is eating good food, the other …….is eating new dishes!! Now as much as I love creating new dishes and cooking them for family ,sometimes it’s hard as I have creator’s block……. the cook’s version of writer’s block. No matter how much I walk around the farmer’s market, ethnic food aisles, spice aisle…..I am not inspired!!!! Though many a time, I have just gone with the easiest and tried and true recipe……..coz it’s just easier!!!

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Thai Style Sesame Peanut Noodles

So when my sis and my bro in law N, came up to me and asked for something new that I’ve never made before……. I was stuck! So I turned to my handy notebook where I have made notes over the years and I found a recipe that I had noted many years ago……. a Thai version of the sesame peanut noodles that I make on a regular basis. I fused many cuisines with this particular recipe, I used Japanese Soba noodles with a Chinese -American recipe and added a good hefty dose of Thai flavors. It ended somehow becoming this warm, earthy, comforting plate of noodles that encompasses every part of the palate……sweet, savory, spice, heat, umami! The earthy spices coupled with the unctuousness of peanut butter and sweetness from the coconut milk makes a beautifully nuanced dressing for the noodles which have an earthy and nutty flavor on their own! Add in crunchy veggies and It becomes a dish that’s pretty irresistible!!

 

THAI STYLE SESAME PEANUT NOODLES

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 45 mins
  • Print

Ingredients:

8 oz Japanese Soba Noodles

¼ cup Carrots, peeled and cut into matchsticks

¼ cup French Beans, cut on a diagonal

¼ cup Peppers, sliced

2-3 stalks of Green Onions, cut on a diagonal

1 tbsp. Sesame Seeds, for garnish

1 tsp Sesame Oil

 Sauce:

1 tbsp. Oil

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 Shallot, finely minced

1 tsp Galangal, minced

1 Thai Green Chilli, sliced

1 tbsp. Red Curry Paste

½ tsp Turmeric

½ cup smooth Peanut Butter

¾ cup Coconut Milk

½ tbsp. Dark Soy Sauce

1 tsp Lime Juice

1 tsp Brown Sugar

Salt to taste

 

Directions:

  • Cook the soba noodles according to the directions on the package.
  • In the oil, sauté the garlic, shallots, galangal and green chilli for a minute. Reduce the heat to low.
  • Then add the red curry paste, turmeric, peanut butter, coconut milk, soy sauce and lime juice. Whisk until smooth. Then add the sugar and salt. Whisk again. Simmer on low for 3-4 minutes.
  • Meanwhile microwave the carrot, beans and peppers for 2 minutes. This will cook the veggies but still keep them crunchy.
  • Toss the veggies and noodles in the sauce. Remove from heat.
  • Drizzle sesame oil and garish with sesame seeds before serving.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Indian Style Sweet Potato Latkes

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Indian Style Sweet Potato Latkes

Indian Style Sweet Potato Latkes

Last week I celebrated 17 years of living in the United States. I took a moment to reflect on my journey from a naïve, innocent and unworldly young woman who had just graduated from college to my life now as a wife, mother, daughter  and, I hope, relatively decent professional working in the field of education. I don’t think I would change anything…good and bad….they’ve all been the incidents that have made me what I am today!!! Now that I’ve finished with my little piece of introspection, let’s move onto food…shall we?? When I first moved here, I was amazed to see that they had a whole channel dedicated to food!!! Even though the shows mainly featured traditional American foods and a whole lot of meat and potatoes, I was hooked! There were a few Latin food shows and once in a while there would be a show featuring Padma from Top Chef. Food blogs were not yet a thing!!! I sound so old. ……but this just shows how fast things change!!!

Anyway, when spicy foods began featuring on shows more and more cuisines around the world became more accessible, I was addicted!!! Then while watching Food Network star I saw Aarti Sequeira and I was impressed…here was a woman who was doing exactly what I was doing…fusing Indian food and the spices I use everyday with other cuisines and integrating to everyday life in America. One day I succumbed and bought her cookbook. That’s where I came across this recipe…. Indian Style Sweet Potato Latkes. I’ve always been fascinated with Latkes…as a cuisine we use a lot of potatoes in many different ways and I’ve always thought that there would never be a potato preparation that I would not like………I didn’t like latkes. I think it was the fact that there was no spice and it’s served with applesauce, which I am not a fan off, sealed the deal!!! Her recipe, which I initially
rejected, …has spices and sweet potatoes, which I like, and it’s a riff of the Indian version of tempura..Pakoras. I can never leave anything alone so I of course tweaked it further to suit my family’s needs but I will now eat latkes if its anything like these!!!

Shredded sweet potatoes with sweet red onions, earthy ginger, aromatic cardamom, a hint of anise with fennel seeds and fresh cilantro…my mouth waters when I think about it. Turmeric gives it a bright hue while cayenne gives it heat and chickpea flour gives it a nuttiness that takes me back to eating pakoras on a rainy afternoon in India with a hot cup of tea, talking to my mom, dad and sis. Simple days and simple pleasures, which I treasure! I served it with Greek yogurt, green chutney and tamarind chutney ala chaat
….delicious roadside eats found in food carts on every corner in India. Smallest A, however, loved his with ketchup….yes, ketchup, albeit s a spicy one. …apparently ,we Indians cannot even ketchup alone!!!

Indian Style Sweet Potato Latkes

Indian Style Sweet Potato Latkes

 
 INDIAN STYLE SWEET POTATO LATKES
1 medium size sweet potato peeled and shredded

½ cup thinly sliced red onion

4-5 cardamom pods, seeded removed and crushed

½ tsp. fennel seeds

½  tsp. cayenne, depending upon taste

¼ tsp. turmeric

2 tbsp. minced fresh ginger

1 Thai green chilli minced

¼ cup cilantro finely chopped

Salt to taste

1 – 1 ½ cups chickpea flour

Oil, for frying

Greek Yogurt, for serving

Green chutney, for serving

Tamarind chutney, for serving


Before you peel and shred the sweet potatoes, slice the red onions,
place in a strainer and place in a bowl filled with water and ice cubes, 
for 15 minutes.This removes the astringency of the onions and leaves 
them sweet and flavorful.

Place the shredded potatoes in cheesecloth over a bowl.

Sprinkle with salt and set aside for 5 minutes.

Drain and add the onions to the potatoes. Squeeze the bundle over the 
sink,removing as much excess liquid as you can.

Transfer to a bowl. Add cardamom, fennel seeds, turmeric, cayenne, 
ginger,green chilli, cilantro and chickpea flour. Mix well.

Add just enough water to bind it together.I usually use sparkling water 
as it makes an airy batter but plain water works just as well.

Heat a skillet over medium heat with a ¼ inch layer of oil.

Preheat the oven to 200F to keep latkes warm.

Using an ice cream scoop, mound the potatoes onto the skillet. Lightly 
flatten using a spatula. Leave plenty of room between the latkes.

Fry till the first side is golden brown. Turn them over and flatten 
slightly again. Fry till second side is golden brown.

Drain on paper towels and keep warm in the oven. Repeat using remaining 
batter.

Serve warm with yogurt and the chutneys.