i can't deny my love for this fiery cuisine, as i tend to lean toward the "it's spicy, but add more spicy-ness" method of cooking with asian dishes. again, much like thai food (one of my favorites to both prepare & eat) the szechuan dishes often contain many flavors, such as sweet, sour, bitter, hot, salty, aromatic, and fragrant. the hot foods like the red chili stimulate the palate, making it more sensitive to all the other flavors, thus creating these firework like sensations in your mouth. the sauce these noodles (i used gluten-free rice noodles) are tossed in are not too spicy (which you can always adjust and tweak to your taste, like mine:))and are perfectly creamy and peanut-y. they turned out just as good as they look. despite the demanding long list of ingredients, the recipe is simple to make. you just throw everything into the food processor, puree and toss with your favorite noodles.
Based loosely on a Ina Garten recipe
6 garlic cloves, chopped into small pieces
1/4 cup of fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup tahini (find it near the peanut butter section of your grocer)
1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
1/2 cup of good soy sauce
1/4 cup dry sherry
1/4 cup of sherry vinegar
1/4 cup of honey
1/2 teaspoon of hot chili oil
1/2 teaspoon sriracha
2 tablespoons of dark sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
1 pound of any asian style noodles (the gluten free noodles i posted about would work here)
1 red bell pepper, julienned
1 yellow bell pepper , julienned
4 scallions, sliced diagonally of the green and white parts
Place the garlic and ginger in a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Add the vegetable oil, tahini, peanut butter, soy sauce, sherry, sherry vinegar, sriracha, honey, chili oil, sesame oil, and ground peppers. Puree the sauce.
Cook the pasta . Drain the pasta in a colander, place it in a large bowl, and while still warm, toss with 3/4 of the sauce. Add the red and yellow bell peppers and scallions; toss well. Serve warm or at room temperature. The remaining sauce may be added, as needed, to moisten the pasta.