Sesame noodles take on the cold Asian noodle bowl flavors you love and give them a make-over for time and pantry ease. Soy, cilantro, honey, peanuts, and sesame oil give you the flavors you crave, red pepper flakes give you the ability to make it as spicy as you like. Adapted from a family recipe by an LC recipe tester, so you know it’s going to be divine.
Adapted by LC recipe tester Sasha Pravdic | Personal collection, 2021
These sesame noodles are a recipe my mom used to make all the time as her signature potluck dish. Back in the day, it was considered quite exotic because sesame oil was less widely available and rather expensive. For this reason, my mother halved the amount of sesame oil called for but I think it was a good change regardless of the reason.
I don’t know the origins of the recipe– it was scribbled onto a slip of paper but my mom cleverly nicknamed it “Spaghetti with Bite” due to the generous quantity of crushed red peppers.–Sasha Pravdic
WHAT IS LC HUMP DAY PASTA?
We’re glad you asked. LC Hump Day Pasta (#LCHumpDayPasta) is a little something we cooked up to help you on the night of the week that you feel least like cooking. Wednesday was traditionally Prince Spaghetti Day (for those of you old enough to remember). We’ve revamped and updated that to Hump Day and included every type of pasta there is.
CAN I MAKE PASTA SALAD AHEAD OF TIME?
You can! And, some people say, it even tastes better when it’s been given a little time to absorb the flavors of the sesame dressing. Here are a few things to keep in mind, to make sure your sesame noodles stay at their best. Don’t overcook your noodles, whether you’re making the salad ahead or not. They’re going to absorb the dressing and you want them to retain some chew.
When you make the dressing, you can keep a little aside and add it to your noodles right before serving. Let them come to room temp, toss with the extra dressing and you’re ready to go.
- 1 pound spaghetti or angel hair pasta
- 1 to 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes depending on your heat tolerance
- 1/4 cup mild vegetable oil
- 1/4 cup toasted sesame oil
- 6 tablespoons honey
- 5 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves chopped
- 3/4 cup chopped roasted salted peanuts
- 1/2 cup chopped scallions
- 2 tablespoons white sesame seeds toasted
- In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to directions and drain in a colander, but don’t rinse.
- While pasta is cooking, in a small skillet over medium heat, warm crushed red pepper and oils until sizzling, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat and carefully stir in honey, soy sauce, and salt.
- In a serving bowl, combine honey mixture and drained pasta. Let pasta sit and come to room temperature, tossing occasionally so that the liquid gets absorbed.
- Just before serving, top with cilantro, peanuts, scallions, and sesame seeds.
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
These simple sesame noodles were quick to make and delicious to eat. Ingredients are most likely in your pantry, which makes it a nice lunch or dinner on the fly.
The noodles absorb the sauce and are so flavorful with the heat from the crushed red pepper flakes. The peanuts add a wonderful crunch while the cilantro brings that freshness we all love; however, I felt it screamed for some acid. After my first taste, I added a good squeeze of fresh lime juice which was a game-changer for me. In addition, I chose to add a protein, marinated baked tofu, which was the perfect accompaniment to the dish.
There is something quite addicting about a bowl of pasta sitting on the counter that is best eaten at room temperature. A slight swoop with your fork as you walk by, a little rest to absorb more spicy sesame sauce, then another stolen bite. Perhaps just one more forkful to test the suggested accompaniments?
I was drawn to this recipe for sesame noodles for several reasons. It is fast, easy, uses pantry staples and it looked like something that would suit my family’s crazy work life. Perfect for those who work late hours and easily packable for lunch the next day.
I used toasted sesame oil as that is what I had on hand and a teaspoon of red pepper flakes for a little bite. Combined with green onions, garden-fresh cilantro, sesame seeds, and salted peanuts, this was a perfect mouthful of goodness. To provide a counterbalance to the slight spiciness, I served this with a Japanese-style cucumber salad.
These sesame noodles are perfect for a non-standard appetizer. Packed full of flavor and light to digest. Very easy to prepare and the ingredients are easy to find, or in my case, I had all of them in my pantry. I had a birthday dinner for a friend and everybody loved it!
These are phenomenal sesame noodles that are great cold or at room temperature. The flavor is fantastic and it has a nice heat level without being spicy through and through.
I used 1.5 teaspoons of red pepper flakes. I found myself sneaking forkfuls of the leftover noodles every time I went to the refrigerator for something and a week later I’m still thinking about them! I’m looking forward to making these again and tossing in some chopped chicken or shrimp to mix it up as well. I’m going to try a little less canola oil on my second pass and substitute a little pasta water instead.
Originally published September 22, 2021