Loaded Garlic and Ginger Pasta Salad
One of my wife’s favorite dishes is, well at least that I make, probably my garlic noodles that are infused sesame oil. This dish is also one that is one of my go to dishes when I go to a get together. Not only are those super easy to make, but everyone tends to love them. Let’s just say the bowl is always empty. I typically only make that dish when the mint in my backyard is in abundance, so typically late spring through early fall.
This dish however kind of stems from this recipe, but I wanted something a bit more hearty, and something that I knew everyone in my family would love, but with a couple of different twists. This is what I am coining as my loaded garlic noodle pasta salad.
This recipe packs in the flavor, texture, and is a great main course.
Let’s get started.
Ingredients for the sauce:
- 1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced
- 4 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tbsp grated fresh ginger
- 1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
- 1 1/2 tsp dark sesame oil
- 1 tbsp Korean fermented bean paste
- generous pinch of kosher salt, to taste
- 1/4 tsp cracked black pepper
Ingredients for the salad:
- 1 bundle bean thread noodles, soaked in hot water until slightly tender
- 1 bag of bun bo hue noodles, or a thick pasta like a bucatini, cooked before al dente
- 2 tbsp canola oil
- 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts seasoned with salt and pepper, cooked and chopped
- 8 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 2 whole eggs, beaten
- 2 cups of spinach leaves, washed and patted dry
- 2 whole carrots, shredded
- 1 small can of bamboo shoots
- 1 tbsp white sesame seeds
- 1/2 cup roasted peanuts
- 1 cup of frozen broccoli florets, slightly thawed
- 1/2 cup of chow mein noodles
- Thai chili peppers, thinly sliced (optional)
- An appetite
Start by mixing all of your sauce ingredients in a bowl. Mix well, and set it to the side.
Next, heat a large skillet on medium heat. Add in the half of the oil, and bring to heat. Give the skillet a swirl, then add in the chicken breasts. Cook for about 4 minutes per side, the remove from the skillet and let them cool. Once cool, chop them up. If you see a little pink, don’t worry as we will finish in the next step.
Once your noodles are cooked al dente, make sure both of them are drained and ready to go. This is almost like a stir fry so everything is going to go a bit quickly.
Add the remaining oil to the skillet (make sure it is large enough to hold everything) on medium heat. Toss in the garlic, giving a good stir, and and cook for a couple of minutes being careful not to burn the garlic.
Add in the chopped chicken, and half of the sauce. Swirl around and cook for about 3 minutes or so. Next toss in the thick noodles, give a good toss, and make sure the garlic and sauce coat the chicken. Cook for an additional few minutes. Next add in the broccoli, and give that a good toss. Add the beaten eggs, and stir. This almost creates a creamy sauce that everyone loved.
To a large serving bowl, add the carrots, bamboo shoots, peanuts, sesame seeds, bean thread noodles, and spinach. Give that a good toss.
Add the remaining sauce to the skillet, and using tongs or your tossing skills, make sure everything is nicely incorporated. Cook for another minute.
Add the noodle mixture to the mixed up serving bowl, and use those tongs to incorporate everything together. This can take a minute or two.
Now you are ready to serve. I keep the chow mein noodles and sliced chilies on the side for those that want additional texture, and heat.
The end result is well, how do I put it? Let’s just say no one spoke for about 3 minutes as their faces were looking down and slurping noodles. Then everyone came up for air and began questioning everything in the salad, and stating how awesome it was. This serves a small army, probably 12 people, and is great for leftovers, warm, or cold. What’s not to love about that, right? Hope you enjoy!