Brianne at Cupcakes & Kale Chips is a great source of food inspiration for me. When she posted a recipe for sesame noodles, I wanted them right away … it was a simple, quick recipe, so I went into the kitchen and made them straight away. I have veggies galore in my kitchen right now, so I had to throw some of those in. So I sliced up some cucumber in thin noodle-like strips and tossed in some shredded carrot and sweet onion.
I also replaced the peanut butter in the recipe with PB2 … it’s a powdered form of peanut butter that has most of the oil removed. And I left out some of the oil to cut down the amount of fat. It was still quite delicious. I looove this sauce!
You could add in cooked chicken or shrimp or scallops to dress this dish up, use other vegetables or even replace the noodles with zucchini noodles (have you seen that? zucchini cut up in long thin strips like noodles? I want to try that one of these days!) Anyway, I used brown rice Pad Thai noodles and that worked wonderfully. My cucumber strips weren’t quite straight or thin enough to really act like noodles, but they added a refreshing crunch to the dish.
Sesame Noodles with Cucumber
Adapted from Cupcakes & Kale Chips (who got the recipe from The Mom 100 Cookbook by Katie Workman)
There is enough sauce to cover about twice this much noodles/vegies, so go ahead and make more if you have more mouths to feed. I was just cooking for me … I’m lucky, though. Making this amount means I have some of that scrumptious sauce left for another day.
- 3 cloves of garlic
- A 2-inch hunk of ginger root, peeled
- 2 Tablespoons white or rice vinegar
- 2 teaspoons Sriracha or other hot pepper sauce (use more or less to taste)
- 2 Tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 – 2 Tablespoons dark sesame oil (I used 1 Tablespoon, but I think it could use a little more)
- 4 Tablespoons PB2
- 3 Tablespoons water
Noodles and vegies:
- 4 – oz. of noodles (I used brown rice pad thai noodles, but any long skinny noodle will work …)
- 1/2 cup of cucumber, cut in long thin strips like the noodles
- 1/4 cup of shredded carrots
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced onion
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced bell pepper
- Garnish: fresh cilantro, chopped peanuts, sesame seeds (or chia seeds if you can’t find your sesame seeds … like me)
- Make the sesame sauce: whir all of the sauce ingredients in a handi chopper, food processor or a blender until smooth. Set the sauce aside.
- Prepare the noodles according to the package directions, reserving 1/2 cup of the noodle cooking water (or 1 cup if you are making a full batch), then drain the noodles.
- Add the reserved cooking water to half of the sesame sauce and blend. Place the warm drained noodles in a large bowl and toss them with the sauce and vegies until everything is coated.
- I skipped this step because I was starving but the recipe says to let the noodles cool to room temperature because they will absorb more sauce as they sit. This might be true … I have yet to try it.
- Garnish with cilantro leaves and peanuts or sesame seeds and serve. Try not to inhale them like I did.
This is a Secret Recipe Club post. If you haven’t heard of the Secret Recipe Club, it’s made up of a group of food bloggers. Each month every blogger in the club is “assigned” another participating food blogger to make a recipe from. You choose any recipe from the blog you are assigned, make or bake it, and blog about it, then everyone in your group posts their “secret recipes” on the same date and time. It’s really quite fun.
This month I was assigned Art from my Table. I was immediately intrigued by the name of the blog and excited to dig into Chellie’s recipes. She has such a variety of things to choose from! It took me a while to figure out what to make, but once I saw these little tarts, I was totally hooked.
I don’t make pastries or pies very often … wait, no, that’s not true … I don’t make pies or pastries AT ALL. Unless my dad is around to make the crust for me. I have a huge crust-phobia. But pumpkin, sage, and goat cheese? In a cute little bite? Seriously. That was totally something I had to try. And I really love that I can freeze the dough (and filling) for later, so I don’t have to make them all at once. I have instant impressive appetizers just waiting in my freezer! Next time I will crimp the edges better, though, because most of them opened up like an oyster shell peeking out at you. The crust turned out nice and flaky and tender, though … what was I so afraid of?
Pumpkin & Goat Cheese Mini-Pies
Recipe from Art from my Table
For the Dough:
- 1 cup of flour
- 1 cup of white whole wheat flour
- 1 1/3 stick of unsalted butter
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp garlic powder (optional)
- 1 egg beaten
- 3 tbs heavy cream or yogurt (more if needed … I used plain lowfat yogurt)
- Place flour, salt and butter in a big bowl. Work with your fingertips or with a pastry blender ‘til the mixture resembles coarse meal. You want to keep some visible pieces of butter
- Beat together egg and 3 tbsp of cream. Pour the mixture into the dry ingredients.
- Using your fingertips, mix them smoothly by making circular movements. Don’t knead the dough.
- Keep mixing. The dough should come together quickly and if it doesn’t happen, add one more tablespoon of yogurt. (I did.) It was still crumbly, though, but it did form okay into a ball.
- Don’t worry about spots, visible pieces of butter and stripes of yogurt; they are a good sign. Press to form a ball, cover and keep in the fridge for at least 15 minutes.
Note: You can keep this dough in the freezer for about a month. Just place it in the fridge and let it defrost overnight before using.
For the filling:
- 1 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
- 1/2 small onion chopped
- 1 – 2 cloves garlic
- 1 tbs olive oil
- 1/2 tbs fresh sage chopped
- 1/8 tsp nutmeg
- Salt and fresh ground black pepper
- 4 oz goat cheese
How to assemble the little pies:
- Preheat oven to 350F˚.
- Place dough in a floured surface and roll it out into a 1/8 inch thin layer. Using a 4 inch round cookie cutter cut the dough into circles. Place the pumpkin filling in the center of the circle, crumble or place a bit of cheese on top of the pumpkin filling and fold the dough over into a semicircle.
- Crimp down the edges and arrange in a baking sheet. Keep doing the same process until the dough is gone (or till you get tired of making them and then just freeze the rest of the dough and filling in separate containers for another time). It should make about 24 little pies.
- Brush with egg wash, sprinkle with sesame and poppy seeds, and bake at 350 for about 30 minutes or until golden in color.