Karin Calloway

Food columnist for The Augusta Chronicle.

Sweet and Spicy Asian Noodles have a bit of fire

It’s time to switch to fare with built-in heat

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I've been packing heat in my lunchbox all winter, as in hot entrees, chili and soups. Now, I'm ready to head into spring with something lighter, such as this sweet and spicy Asian noodle salad.

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Sweet and spicy Asian noodle salad  Jackie Ricciardi/Staff
Jackie Ricciardi/Staff
Sweet and spicy Asian noodle salad

I used standard linguine pasta , but you can use Asian egg or rice noodles. Although the recipe calls for making carrot ribbons with a vegetable peeler, you can skip the step and buy a package of shredded carrots .

The sauce requires just two ingredients: Hoisin sauce and chili paste or Sriracha sauce. We keep a bottle of Sriracha sauce in the refrigerator most of the time. It is a sauce that adds heat, but not too much. Chili paste comes in jars and can be found in the Asian aisle of most supermarkets. If you don't want to purchase the paste or the sauce, substitute your favorite hot sauce. Add it according to taste.

Shredded cabbage or broccoli slaw would boost the vegetable content and fiber, and you could add shredded, cooked chicken or steamed shrimp.

Sprinkle the salad with chopped, roasted peanuts just before serving.

Sweet and Spicy Asian Noodles

8 ounces Asian egg or rice noodles

2 medium carrots

6 scallions, sliced

2 tablespoons cilantro, minced

1/2 cup hoisin sauce

1 teaspoon chili paste or Sriracha

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup roasted peanuts, finely chopped

Cook the noodles according to package directions. Drain and set aside. Peel the carrots and use a vegetable peeler to make long, thin strips of carrot. Toss the noodles, scallions, carrots, cilantro and jalapeño, if desired, in a mixing bowl.

Combine the remaining ingredients in a small mixing bowl and toss with the noodles. Put onto a platter and sprinkle with peanuts. Or, divide the noodles among plastic containers, sprinkle each serving with peanuts, seal and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Makes 4 servings.

Reach Karin Calloway at karin.calloway@comcast.net. Follow her on Twitter at twitter.com/karincalloway.

On the menu

March 26

Oyster Roast and Toast: 7-11 p.m. , Daniel Field airport, Highland Avenue; fresh, steamed, roasted and raw oysters; chicken fingers; salad; desserts; wine; beer; live auction; The Toasters; $35, or $50 per couple; www.cookinforkids.com

March 27

Cookin' for kids: 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. , Daniel Field airport, Highland Avenue; wild game, barbecue and fish cook-offs; food, karaoke, children's games, inflatables, arts and crafts; $5 for 13 and older; $3 for 3-12; free for 2 and younger; www.cookinforkids.com

April 24

Sweet Celebrations: 6-10 p.m. , North Augusta Community Center, 495 Brookside Ave.; desserts, beverages and silent auction of theme baskets; benefits The RECing Crew; (803) 279-8820, www.therecingcrew.com


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