Noodles & Veggies in the BEST Peanut Sauce

For some reason I have never been able to pull off a good peanut sauce and it’s a shame because peanut sauce is one of my favorite things to have when I am out for Thai food.

Tonight was rainy, cold & gross so ordering in some Thai did seem like the thing to do but after a second thought I was determined to make it myself.

And I did!  Adding a little of this and a little of that, this time the peanut sauce turned out PERFECT.  And with plenty leftover, I am looking forward to enjoying it with a bunch of meals this week.

Hope you enjoy it just as much.

Noodles & Veggies in Peanut Sauce

Serving of your favorite noodles (whole wheat penne)
Choices of vegetables (steamed broccoli, water chestnuts, green peas)
Peanut Sauce

Cook noodles according to package directions until just add al dente.

If desired, saute vegetables in a pan with 1 tsp olive oil and 1 tsp minced garlic.  Then add cooked pasta & 2 tbsp of the peanut sauce.  Stir so that everything is coated in the sauce and cook until warmed through.

You can also use precooked veggies (either leftover or in the microwave) and just pour the sauce over the noodles and vegetables.

Peanut Sauce

(makes 1 1/2 cups)

1 tsp oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp sambal oelek (for spice, omit if you wish)
2 tbsp. peanut butter, natural if possible
1/2 cup lite coconut milk
1/2 cup water
1 tbsp. soy sauce
1 tsp Agave or Honey, if using natural peanut butter
Cayenne Pepper or Red Pepper Flakes (optional)
Cornstarch (optional)

In a small saucepan heat oil over medium heat.  Add garlic and sambal oelek, if using.  Cook for 1 minute and add the peanut butter.  Stir for another 2 minutes until the peanut butter begins to melt.  Stir in coconut milk, water, soy sauce, agave (or honey), if using.  Cook over medium low heat, uncovered for 8 – 10 minutes, whisking ever. Taste and season with salt accordingly.  Whisk in the cayenne.  If using the cornstarch, add now and whisk in briskly.  Otherwise, let thicken by simmering over low heat until it reaches the desired consistency.


Chicken & Sweet Potato Curry

Sorry for the lack of posts lately.  It’s not that I haven’t been cooking (and obviously eating), just haven’t had a lot of time to post.

But here is a meal that is definitely worth trying.  A modification of the Shrimp & Bok Choy dish I love so much, this one uses another thing I love: sweet potatoes!

Chicken & Sweet Potato Curry

(makes 3 servings – makes great leftovers for lunch!)

6 oz. chicken breast, cut into 1 inch cubes
1 cup yellow onion, diced
1 small sweet potato, cut into 1 inch cubes
1 can lite coconut milk
1/2 cup water
1 cup bamboo shoots (optional)
1 tbsp sambal oelek
2 tsp curry powder (mild, medium or hot depending on your preference)
2 tsp. olive oil

1. In a saucepan with steamer basket, steam the cubed sweet potato for 6-7 minutes or until cooked though.

1.   In a large skillet, heat 1 tsp of olive oil over medium heat.  Season chicken with salt and pepper.  Place chicken in the pan.  Cook 3 minutes on one side before turning over.  Continue until chicken is browned but not fully cooked, about 6 – 7 minutes.  Remove from pan and place to the side.

2. Add remaining olive oil to the pan.  Add the onions with the Sambal Oelek & curry powder.  Saute for 3 – 4 minutes or until softened.  Toss in bamboo shoots, if using, and cook for another 3 minutes.

3. Pour in coconut milk and the 1/2 cup of water, scraping the bottom of the pan to remove anything that has stuck to the bottom.  Add in the cooked sweet potato.   Cover and let come to a boil until reducing the heat and letting simmer for at least 10 minutes.  Right before serving, add chicken and cook another 3-4 minutes.  Season with salt & pepper to taste.

4.  Serve over your choice of noodles, rice or steam veggies (broccoli is great!).

Shrimp & Bok Choy in Spicy Coconut Broth


Next time you reach for the Thai takeout menu after a long day, why not give this recipe a shot instead.  You will be impressed at how a few ingredients can produce a dish so satisfying and just as good, if not better than your local Thai place.

Shrimp & Bok Choy in Spicy Coconut Broth

Serves 2

1/2 lb large shrimp
2 cups bok choy (about 3 large leaves), leaves & stems thinly sliced
2 cans light coconut milk
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 tbsp minced ginger
1 tbsp sambal oelek (chili sauce)
1/4 cup water (optional)*
2 tsp olive oil (can also use vegetable oil or canola oil)
* I use a little water to cut the heaviness of the coconut milk but don’t feel obliged to do the same

In a large saucepan heat oil over medium-low heat.  Once heated, add garlic, ginger, sambal oelek and the stems of the bok choy.  Saute for 2 minutes and then add coconut milk and water (if using).  Reduce heat to low, cover and let simmer for at least 20 minutes so the flavors can develop**.   Add bok choy and season to taste with salt.  Cover and let simmer for another 5-7 minutes or until the bok choy begins to wilt slightly.  Add shrimp, cover and cook an additional 5 minutes or until the shrimp are light pink.

** If you have more time, let simmer for longer for a more intense flavor.