Hello School Year – Hello Busy Fall! Its easy to run by your favorite Asian restaurant and pick up food – but you can make it at home easier, inexpensively and much better for you. Christine and I will whip up a couple of fun and easy recipes that everyone can enjoy – no delivery needed!

Easy Asian Peanut Sauce

  • 2 TB Canola Oil
  • 2 TB Red Curry Paste
  • 2 TB Natural Peanut Butter
  • 1 Cup Coconut Milk
  • 2 TB Honey
  • 1 TB Tamari or Light Soy Sauce
  • 1 Tsp Lemon Juice
  • 2 TB Finely Chopped Roasted Peanuts

Heat the oil over medium heat in a saucepan, add the curry paste and cook and stir until fragrant. Stir in the remaining ingredients.

Serve up the yummy peanut sauce with some sates! We skewered some mushrooms. broccoli, red peppers, chicken and steak to dip in the delicious creamy sauce. Just sprinkle with a little Chines 5-spice powder, some olive oil, salt and pepper and grill or roast until done.

*** Do you know the spices in Chinese 5 Spice Powder? Cinnamon, cloves, fennel seeds, star anise and Szechuan peppercorns!

And use the yummy peanut sauce to create:

Pasta Salad with an Asian Twist

I’m adding water chestnuts to this salad for their crisp, refreshing crunch. Have you ever seen them fresh? When in season, international markets will have them in the produce section – because they are not a nut, but an aquatic veggie that grows in marshes. (Not surprisingly, they will be stored in water.) You just need to peel them before eating them to enjoy their slight sweetness. Other alternatives for this recipe are fresh jicama or bamboo shoots. Lotus root is another good choice if you are doing some adventurous shopping.

  • 16 oz Whole Wheat Linguine** Cooked, Rinsed, And Cooled
  • 8 Cups Thinly Sliced Purple Cabbage or Napa Cabbage (or combination of the two)
  • 1 Large Red, Yellow or Orange Pepper, Finely Chopped
  • ½ Cup Chopped Cilantro
  • ½ Cup Water Chestnuts
  • ½ Cup Green Onions, Sliced (Green Parts Only)
  • 1 Cup Toasted Chopped Cashews
  • ¼ Cup Sesame Seeds
  • 1 Recipe Easy Peanut Sauce

Combine the noodles, cabbages, pepper, cilantro, water chestnuts, and scallions in a large salad bowl. Beginning with half of the dressing, toss the salad, adding more dressing as desired. Top the salad with the cashews and sesame seeds.

*You can use any kind of thin noodles from the international aisle. Udon or fresh Chinese noodles are a great substitution, or if you’re looking to make the salad gluten-free, you can use rice noodles. (Don’t forget to use gluten-free soy sauce as well!)

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