Saturday, July 6, 2013

Asparagus Chicken with Soba Noodles


For a long time, I have wanted to try cooking with Japanese soba noodles. I believe I have had these noodles made from buckwheat once or twice - but I have not tried anything at home, despite the good healthy qualities of soba noodles.. So once again, I have Cooking Light come to the rescue and offer up an easy recipe that I can play with.

So I pulled the recipe for Hoisin-Grilled Chicken with Soba Noodles and played with it a bit. I added asparagus, using the lovely thin Asparagus you can get here in Michigan when it is right in season and took out some of the chili paste to make it more mild. The resulting dish was a two-time winner. The light dish made for a completely lovely dinner. And not only that, but the following day, I ate it cold for lunch. I have often felt that if a dish tastes good cold the next day, then you have done it really well! What is nice, my like my previous recipe, is that this becomes another brown-bag lunch winner for work. It had a really nice taste cold and would be a welcome change of pace from salads and sandwiches.

Ingredients (Serves 4):
3 tbsp Hoisin sauce
1 1/2 tsp Balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp Chinese five-spice powder
3 Chicken breast halves (skinless and boneless), pounded or sliced to no more than 3/4" thick
Cooking spray
6 ounces Soba noodles (uncooked)
1 bunch thin Asparagus tips (top 3" of the stalk)
2 tbsp Rice vinegar
1 tsp Sesame oil
1 tbsp & 1 tsp Soy sauce (lower-sodium if you have it)
2 tsp Sesame seeds

1. Combine hoisin sauce, balsamic vinegar, Worcestershire sauce and Chinese five-spice powder and mix thoroughly. Add chicken breasts and marinate for around 10 minutes.
2. Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat and coat it with cooking spray. Add chicken and cook for around 12 minutes (6 minutes per side). Let chicken stand 5 minutes and thinly slice across the grain.
3. Meanwhile, bring a large saucepan of water to a boil. Add noodles and cook around 1 1/2 minutes. Add asparagus to the noodles and cook for and additional 2 1/2 more minutes. Remove from heat and drain. Add to serving bowl.
4. Combine rice vinegar, sesame oil and soy sauce in a bowl. Add to noodle mixture, tossing to coat. Add sliced chicken atop noodles and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

NOTE: If you have thicker asparagus, then slice in half or cut into smaller pieces. Additionally, you can add it earlier in the cooking time for the soba noodles.


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