Tyler’s Cold Sesame Noodles

Cold Sesame Noodles

The first time I ate cold sesame noodles was when I lived in Tucson. The gourmet sandwich shop where I worked made them extra spicy and kept them extra cold. They were perfect when it was 108 outside and just the thought of hot food made my stomach rumba. Never having made them myself I looked to Tyler for some help. I found what I was looking for in his Cold Sesame Noodle recipe that is heavy on the peanut butter and flavored with just the right amounts of soy sauce, toasted sesame oil, chili sauce and rice wine vinegar. Next time a heat wave hits you know where to find me. Standing in front of the open fridge with a fork in my sesame noodles.

Tyler Florence Fridays

This is my entry for Tyler Florence Fridays. A talented group of foodie bloggers who love Tyler…and his recipes.

Cold Sesame Noodles

Cold Sesame Noodles

Kosher salt
1 pound Chinese egg noodles or spaghetti
1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
3 cloves garlic, smashed
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 cup creamy peanut butter
3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1 teaspoon red chili sauce (recommended: Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce)
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
6 tablespoons water
2 scallions, sliced thin
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
Fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish

1. Cook the noodles in large pot of boiling salted water over medium heat until barely tender and still firm.

2. Drain immediately and rinse with cold water until cool. Drain the noodles well and transfer to a wide bowl.

3. In a blender or food processor add the ginger, garlic, sugar, peanut butter, vinegar, soy sauce, chili sauce, sesame oil, and water. Process until the mixture is smooth.

4. Put the blender jar into the refrigerator and let it chill for about 1/2 hour. Pour
the peanut sauce over the noodles and toss until well coated.

5. Serve garnished with the scallions, sesame seeds, and cilantro.

Cold Sesame Noodles

Bookmark and Share

Chinese Cold Sesame Noodles

Blue Cheese, Cranberry and Pecan Salad with Grilled Chicken and Honey Mustard Dressing

Red, White & Bleu

This recipe is a recreation of one of my favorite salads from my favorite diner! It is packed with blue cheese, pecans, dried cranberries and topped with grilled chicken. The creamiest, most-delicious, homemade honey mustard you can imagine is drizzled over top.

The textures and different flavors in this salad make it so fun to eat. My taste buds are totally addicted to tart and sweet flavor pairs. I love dried cranberries! They take on a whole new life compared to fresh ones. They are sweeter, less tart and the contrast between them and the bite from the blue cheese is off the flavor charts. Soft, savory, sweet, smoky, salty, crunchy, chewy, creamy, crisp, tangy, tender and juicy; this salad has it all!

It is the most perfect warm weather dinner salad. You can throw the chicken on the grill and have the dressing and salad assembled in the time it takes to cook. And it is nothing short of sublime! Light yet filling and completely addicting!

100_6935 (Small)

The great thing about this salad is you can make it for one or for a crowd. You can adjust how big or how little you want the salad to be. That’s why I haven’t included measurements for the salad fixin’s. But be on the generous side. They really make the salad.

Red, White and Blue Grilled Chicken Salad
(by Reeni)

For the salad

Chicken breast, boneless, skinless
Romaine hearts, chopped
Dried Cranberries
Pecans or Walnuts
Blue Cheese, crumbled

For the dressing*

2 tablespoons Dijon Mustard
3 tablespoons Honey
2 teaspoons Rice Vinegar
Salt and pepper
Mayonnaise (optional)

1. Pound out your chicken breasts between saran wrap using a mallet to your own desired thickness. Season well with salt and pepper. Grill until cooked through.

2. Meanwhile toast the pecans or walnuts in a dry saute pan for about five to seven minutes on low tossing a few times.

3. In a food processor emulsify the mustard, honey and vinegar. Taste and adjust to your liking by adding more honey or more mustard. If too thick thin with a little more vinegar. Season with salt and pepper. For a creamy dressing add a teaspoon or two of mayonnaise. I save my empty honey bear bottles for storing my home-made dressings in. *For creamy honey-mustard in a pinch mix equal parts Ranch dressing and honey mustard.

4. Assemble your salad, start with the romaine and top with generous amounts of cranberries, walnuts and bleu cheese. Drizzle with honey-mustard and top with the grilled chicken.

Printable Recipe

Red, White & Bleu Salad

Bookmark and Share

Tyler’s Asian Chicken Salad with Teriyaki Sauce

Asian Chicken Salad

For Tyler Florence Fridays this week I made his Asian Chicken Salad. Seared chicken breast with a gorgeous Teriyaki glaze of ginger, honey, toasty sesame seeds, and soy sauce served on a bed of grilled romaine. The grilled romaine was my twist on the recipe. Tyler serves his on raw zucchini, I added cucumber slices instead. When I was glazing the chicken as it cooked little drizzles were running down the side and caramelizing in the pan. I didn’t want that tasty caramel to go to waste. So, in another twist I added the rest of the glaze to the pan and lifted those tasty tidbits off the bottom. The result was a gelatinous glaze, with deep, rich flavors; slightly sweet with a hint of ginger and the very distinct soy flavor. What I really like about it was that the soy sauce wasn’t overwhelming; the sauce had a nice balance to it. The chicken was tender and juicy, the grilled romaine had a nice smoky flavor and the cucumbers added a nice, cool crunch. It made a really tasty, satisfying lunch for me today.

This is quick and fail-proof to cook and the recipe can be easily doubled or tripled.

Asian Chicken Salad

Crispy Asian Chicken Salad
(adapted from Tyler Florence Stirring the Pot, page 233)
(Serves 2)
1 1/2 inch piece ginger, peeled and grated
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon honey
2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
For the Chicken:
extra-virgin olive oil
1 large boneless chicken breast (skin on), halved (mine was skinless)
and pounded thin
For the salad:
Cucumber slices
Hearts of Romaine, lightly grilled
1/4 bunch fresh cilantro, for garnish
For the glaze combine the ginger, sesame seeds, sesame oil, honey, and soy sauce in a small bowl and whisk to mix. Set aside.
In a large saute pan heat a 2-count of olive oil (about 2 tablespoons) over medium heat. Season the chicken on both sides with salt and pepper. Place the breasts (skin
sides down) in the pan and sear for 3 to 5 minutes, until golden. Turn the breasts over and using a pastry brush liberally brush the glaze on top of the skin. At this point Tyler puts his in the oven to finish* but I let mine cook through right in the pan. Let cook for a few minutes, flip again and baste. When cooked through remove from the chicken from the pan. Add the rest of the glaze and bring just to a simmer while whisking, remove from heat.
*To finish in the oven: place the whole pan in the preheated oven and roast for 7 to 10 minutes, until chicken juices run clear (180f). Baste with glaze throughout cooking so the breast remains moist and tender. Let chicken stand until ready to serve the salad, then slice chicken.
Arrange romaine on a plate and top with sliced chicken breast. Add cucumber to plate and give it all a liberal dose of the glaze.

Grilled Romaine

If you would like to join TFF you can read about all the details on the Tyler Florence Fridays site.

Asian Chicken Salad

Bookmark and Share

Lemon-Arugula Pesto Pasta Salad

Lemon-Arugula Pesto Pasta Salad

This pasta recipe has a wholesome balance of chickpeas, meaty black olives, sweet red onions, and tangy tomatoes. The lemon-arugula pesto is refreshing, nutty, and salty tasting from the Parmesan cheese. The lemon and arugula complement each other in a perfect meld of flavors. The spirals catch all the tasty bits of pesto and the olives do their job by trapping it inside. Biting into them you get a pleasant burst of sunshine from the lemon. This is a quick and easy side-dish that can even sub as the star. It has all the required elements. The leftovers are perfect for lunch and taste better with age. The pesto can be used on its own; hot or cold; with chicken, seafood, fish, veggies, and as a spread for sandwiches.

Lemon-Arugula Pesto Pasta Salad

Lemon-Arugula Pesto Pasta Salad
(by Reeni)

8 oz. Celentani (Spiral) Pasta
1 can Black Olives, medium-size, pitted
1 can(15.5 oz.) Chickpeas/Garbanzo beans
1 cup diced tomatoes
1/2 cup red onion, thinly sliced
2 teaspoons fresh lemon peel
Lemon-Arugula Pesto Sauce(recipe to follow)
Sea salt and fresh cracked pepper

Cook your pasta to al dente according to package directions. Drain and
run cold water over the pasta. Add to a large bowl.

Add your olives, chickpeas, tomatoes, red onion and lemon peel. Toss
together. Then toss again with Pesto beginning with half of your pesto and
adding as needed until evenly coated.

Season with salt and pepper.

If refrigerated for serving later, remove from fridge about 15 minutes before
to allow the pesto to loosen up a bit. Toss before serving.

Lemon-Arugula Pesto Sauce
(by Reeni)

1/2 cup walnuts
2 cloves garlic
1 and 1/2 cups Baby Arugula leaves
2 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
1 cup fresh grated Parmesan or Romano
1/2 cup Extra-Virgin Olive oil
1/2 cup fresh-squeezed lemon juice
Sea salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste

Toast the walnuts in a skillet on low for 5-7 minutes. Set aside to cool.

To the bowl of your food processor add the walnuts, garlic, arugula, and parsley. Pulse to chop.

Stream in the oil and lemon juice. Pulse constantly until nice and smooth.

Add cheese and pulse briefly to combine.

Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Print Entire Recipe

Print Pesto Sauce Recipe

Lemon-Arugula Pesto Pasta Salad

Strawberry Salad with Mozzarella Pesto Grilled Cheese

Mozzarella & Pesto Grilled Cheese with Strawberry Salad

The strawberries in the market were quite simply the most flawless, exquisite strawberries that I’ve ever seen in my life. Every single one was the deepest shade of juicy red, perfectly ripe without a bruise in sight and most were as big as the palm of my hand. Everyone was exclaiming over them. I knew I had to use them for something supremely divine. I give you this strawberry dressing.

It is so lovely I want to eat it with a spoon like a bowl of soup. It has that distinct flavor strawberries are famous for, a little sweet, a little tart with little pops of basil shining through here and there. The flavor only improves over time, like wine. Besides dressing my salads I’ve been dunking apple slices and strawberries right into it. The sweet apples play off the tartness in the dressing making for a sensational treat.

Rustic peasant bread makes the best grilled cheese. This one had the perfect amount of butter-fried crunchiness and melted, molten mozzarella oozing out the cracks speckled with the pumpkin-arugula pesto I made last week. This tasty sandwich is my creation for Tyler Florence Fridays. You know- that great group of foodies that I’m always raving about and trying to convince you to join. We heart Tyler’s recipes!

Mozzarella & Pesto Grilled Cheese

Strawberry and Basil Dressing
(by Reeni)

1 cup sliced strawberries
2/3 cup Canola oil
1/3 cup fresh squeezed lime juice
1 teaspoon honey
1 tablespoon fresh Basil, chopped
Sea Salt and Fresh cracked pepper to taste

Emulsify everything in a food processor until smooth. Season with salt and pepper if desired. Keep refrigerated.

Printable Recipe

Strawberry Salad

Smoked Mozzarella and Pesto Grilled Cheese
(adapted from Tyler Florence, Stirring the Pot, page 106)

2 slices Peasant Bread
Pesto sauce
3 ounces Mozzarella cheese, shredded or sliced
1 tablespoon butter
1 garlic clove, peeled

To assemble sandwiches smear one side of each slice of bread with Pesto sauce. Layer on the mozzarella and season with fresh cracked pepper. Put the top on. Melt half of the butter in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the sandwich and butter the top side. Cook 2 to 3 minutes per side until golden brown, crispy and cheese is melted. Remove from pan and rub the bread with the garlic clove.

Printable Recipe

Toss together Romaine, apples, strawberries, and almonds. Drizzle some pink over top. Enjoy.
Strawberry Salad