I was going to call this an Udon Noodle Bowl, but since I decided that Udon was the wrong choice of noodle, and I didn't use a bowl, I had to scrap that lol. The flavor was great, but the noodles are a bit too starchy to go with this kind of sauce, so I'll probably be using a linguine or fettuccine noodle in the future - although it would also be really good with rice.
I had a package of Udon noodles for a while, so when I came home with a ton of fresh veggies the other day, I decided to put them to use. I looked online for ideas and saw that most were soups, but I don't like long noodles in my soup (too slurpy), so I decided to wing it. Since I don't normally rinse my pasta when I drain it, I should have picked up on the fact that the package directions specifically say to rinse the Udon. It wasn't bad, just a little gummy in spots, but again, the flavors work great together.
12 oz pkg Udon Noodles (replace with another)
1 T sesame seeds
1 1/2 t sesame oil
1 1/2 t canola or vegetable oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 T packed fresh grated ginger
4 stalks celery, cut into 1/2" pieces
2 carrots, sliced on a diagonal into 1/4" thick slices
1 c halved sugar snap peas
1 lg sweet onion, quartered or cut into chunks
1 small red bell pepper, cut into lg pieces
1 small yellow bell pepper, cut into lg pieces
1 t crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 c Lime Ponzu
1 1/2 c chicken broth
1/4 c water
3 T corn starch
1 small crown of broccoli florets
fresh scallion for garnish - optional
- In a small dry pan, toast the sesame seeds over medium heat, then immediately remove from the pan to stop them from cooking further - set aside
- Cook and drain your pasta per the package instructions
- Heat the sesame and canola oil over med to med-high heat
- Saute the garlic, ginger, celery, carrots, sugar snaps, onion, and bell pepper until the onions just start to turn translucent
- Stir in the crushed red pepper flakes
- In a 2c measuring cup, measure out your Lime Ponzu and chicken broth, using a splash to deglaze any bits that have begun to stick on the bottom of the pan, then pouring in the rest
- Use the same measuring cup to measure your water, then stir in the corn starch to dissolve and pour into the pan, mixing well
- The sauce will immediately begin to thicken - add the broccoli, mixing well while allowing everything come up to a simmer to fully thicken before removing from the heat
- Add the pasta to the pan, tossing well to coat - tongs work well for this
- Serve up plates/bowls topped with the reserved toasted sesame seeds and some fresh snipped scallion
You will see from the pictures that the ratio of sauce to veggies and pasta is such that everything gets a perfect coating of flavor without being soupy. I especially liked the way it seemed that the ginger gravitated to the pasta and how the flavors and heat were well layered.
I tend to go light on salt to begin with, but in this case, I did not feel the need to add salt since the base for Ponzu is a soy sauce, which is salty on its own. You may want to adjust for your own personal taste for salt.