In many parts of China, various types of noodles are part of the local culture. In this dish, as in many noodle dishes, we’re actually combining elements from a few different parts of the country. The concept of eating a noodle dish with some kind of mix of savory sauces is something characteristic to central China. The Sichuan peppercorns come from another central province and add an interesting numb spicy flavor to the dish.
When I need something quick and tasty to bring to a party or to serve a bunch of people, this is one of my go-to dishes. I’m almost ashamed to show you how easy it is to make 😛 But here goes; in the hopes that you can enjoy this dish, too:
- 1/4 c sesame oil
- 2 TBS black rice vinegar (or regular rice vinegar)
- 1 TBS gluten-free soy sauce
- 1 TBS sugar
- 2 tsp sesame paste (tahini)
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1/2 tsp Sichuan peppercorns
- 1 TBS chili bean paste (be sure to check out our resource on where to buy Asian ingredients if you want a gluten-free variety)
- 1/2 c peanuts (omit if making nut-free)
- 4 oz dry brown rice spaghetti (I use the brown rice + quinoa noodles from Trader Joe’s)
- Very thinly sliced cucumbers, in strips
- In a blender, combine the ingredients listed in Group 1.
- Now, add the peanuts (Group 2) and pulse until the peanuts are broken up into crumbles. Do not overblend; otherwise you won’t have the chunks anymore. (If you don’t like chunks, or are making this nut-free, then just omit the peanuts altogether.) Set aside.
- Prepare the rice spaghetti as directed on the package. Once it’s done, and the water is drained from it:
- Combine the blended sauce with the noodles. Top with the Group 4 thinly sliced cucumbers.
- Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving (this is a cold noodle dish! Although, you could serve it warm if you wanted to.)