Quick and Easy Peanut Udon Noodle Salad

Udon is a satisfyingly chewy Asian wheat noodle with a neutral flavor that pairs nicely with any sauce, and tastes great hot or cold. I adore the thick chewy udon that you find in Japanese soups, but the kind of udon I made below were thinner so they cooked in just 4 minutes. I had extra packages of udon sitting in the back of my food pantry from when I’d stocked up at Ocean State Job Lot (who knew this place had so many fancy but cheap food finds?).

I came up with a super easy recipe of udon noodle salad by adding a shaved carrot and diced English cucumber to the cooked udon. For a sauce, I melted 1/3 cup crunchy peanut butter in the microwave for 30 seconds, then stirred in 1/4 cup reduced sodium soy sauce, 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar, 2 tablespoons honey (or stevia) and a tablespoon of sesame oil. It’s topped with hemp seeds, which lately I’ve been sprinkling on everything from yogurt to cottage cheese to vegetables.

ColdPeanutNoodles1

A side note on hemp seeds if you’re not familiar: They’re higher in protein than chia and flax seeds and contain all nine essential amino acids, but they’re lower in fiber and beneficial anti-inflammatory omega-3s. However they’re still a great source of omega-3s and have a more interesting nutty flavor than the neutral-tasting chia or flax. I sprinkle different seeds on different dishes to get all of their unique health benefits!

ColdPeanutNoodles3

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