I've stopped using scarves and gloves, and even take my jacket off when I go out for lunch. Spring is coming, and this in-between time of year makes it tough to select clothing every day. I want to get my summer clothes out and debut new items, but it's 30 degrees when I leave for work in the morning, and the temperature drops again when it gets dark.
Seasonal limbo also applies in the kitchen. I'm ready to lighten my cooking and gear up for fresh, local produce, but I'm also not ready to let go of all of my comforting, wintery recipes quite yet. Just like that ideal outfit that bridges the gap between winter and spring, sesame noodles are a perfect transition meal.
I got this recipe from my mom via my uncle, who always makes delicious food, including grilled meat and side dishes. When I first tried these noodles, I was in middle school and hated cilantro and avoided the dish for several years. Thankfully I decided to try them again, because they are a simple and impressive.
This recipe is interesting enough to accompany a main course or, with some additions, stand alone as its own meal. My most recent version of the dish included stir fried chicken and snow peas, and no other changes needed to be made. It's slightly crunchy from the sesame seeds, savory from the soy sauce, and rich from the sesame oil, while fresh cilantro and garlic keep it light.
As the warm weather approaches, I know I'll be pulling the sesame noodles card out of my recipe box to balance out any soups or roasts that can't wait for next winter.
Hot Sesame Noodles
12 oz. linquine, or pasta of your choice
1 hot green chili pepper
3 Tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
3 Tablespoons vegetable oil
2 Tablespoons sesame oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup soy cauce
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
Cook noodles and set aside
Seed and mince chili
Mix chili, sesame seeds, garlic, oils, cilantro, and soy sauce in a large bowl
Drain noodles well and toss with the other ingredients
Season to taste