Delicious, spicy, garlicky, tingly, peanutty, and endlessly versatile noodles. All you need are a few Asian pantry staples (more on those later). This quick recipe for Sichuan peanut noodles will make 4 servings in 15 minutes!
I fell in love with Sichuan food when I visited my friends in Oakland last year. They took us to a Sichuan restaurant downtown, and I fell in love with the unique tingle with each bite. I was riveted. My husband, on the other hand, thought he was having an allergic reaction. LOL! He's come around since, thankfully.
Unfortunately, there isn't a good Sichuan restaurant around our new home. So I finally mustered the courage to order the fragrant electric berries for myself. This dish is the result of my first endeavor with them. I wanted to make something I knew would be a slam dunk--hence, this recipe.
1 tablespoon grated ginger
4 cloves minced garlic
1/2 cup soy sauce
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1 tablespoon sambal oelek (fresh chili paste)
1 tablespoon creamy peanut butter
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns*
1 tablespoon water
8 oz spaghetti noodles
Ooh, here's a fun secret: You don't actually need Sichuan peppercorn in order for these noodles to be delicious. Promise. I just love them for the tingly málà flavor and sensation.
Optional garnishes include: Scallions (greens and whites), steamed bokchoy, sautéed mushrooms, pan fried salt n' peppa chicken, or LITERALLY ANYTHING ELSE. POSSIBILITIES ARE ENDLESS OK??
Boil the noodles to package instructions, just shy of al dente. Reserve a 1/2 cup of pasta water, and set the noodles aside.
If using, toast the Sichuan peppercorns in a small saucepan on medium heat for 1-2 minutes or until fragrant. Then grind them into a powder using a mortar and pestle or spice grinder.
While the noodles are cooking, prepare the sauce. In a medium bowl, mix together the ginger, garlic, soy sauce, oyster sauce, sambal oelek, peanut butter, brown sugar, sesame oil, and Sichuan peppercorns. Whisk well until everything is evenly incorporated.
Pour the cooked noodles and and sauce back into the empty pot. Turn the heat to medium while you mix and toss. If the noodles start to get sticky, stir in a tablespoon of pasta water at a time. Continue stirring until for about 2-3 minutes or until the noodles are evenly coated and glossy.
Serve and garnish immediately.
I'm just clinging on to whatever makes me feel something lately. This week it happens to be Sichuan peppercorn.
Crying into my noodles,