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Dan Dan Noodles with Cucumber Salad

August 31, 2012

This is quite a spicy dish where you really need the cucumber salad to offset the heat a bit from the Dan Dan Noodles.  So plan on making it as well.

Having a mandolin slicer would be ideal for cutting the cucumbers.  But alas, I don’t have one.  I used to have this guillotine type slicer inherited from my Mom but cut myself on it so many times, I threw it out.  For this recipe I used one side of my box grater that has 3 slicing blades on it.  Not ideal but it gets the job done:  you need super thin slices for this.  I sliced the red onion on the box grater as well, ditto on the super thin.

I have a confession to make:   I use “cheat” foods for this recipe with the garlic and ginger.  The reason for this?  I am lazy.  So feel free to get a chunk of ginger and quite a few garlic gloves to achieve the quantity in the recipe.  If you are interested in participating in my “cheat” food, I get Christopher Ranch brand in a jar, already minced and chopped.  See the picture below.

Dan Dan Noodles with Cucumber Salad (adapted from Cuisine magazine)

Cucumber Salad:

2 cucumbers, sliced very thin, to measure 2 cups

1/2 cup very thinly sliced red onion (this is about 1/2 of a small onion)

1/2 cup rice vinegar

3 tablespoons sugar

Place all ingredients in a medium glass bowl.  Stir to combine.  Cover with plastic wrap and place in refrigerator.  It should be nice and cold by the time you are ready to eat.

Dan Dan Noodles:

1/2  cup sherry (I use Harveys Bristol Cream, original superior, in the blue bottle)

1/2 cup chicken broth

6 tablespoons chunky peanut butter

4 tablespoons soy sauce

2 tablespoons brown sugar

4 teaspoons chili garlic sauce

2 teaspoons dark sesame oil

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/4 cup red pepper, minced

3 tablespoons ginger, minced

2 tablespoons garlic, minced

16 ounces ground turkey

8 ounces of thin spaghetti (you can get authentic and use long life noodles, I just happen to have thin spaghetti all the time)

Combine first  7 ingredients in a bowl (sherry through sesame oil).  Stir with whisk until combined.  Set aside.

Prep for your spaghetti by putting a large pot of water on your burner at medium.

In a large skillet over medium high heat, add olive oil and then saute red pepper, ginger and garlic for about 30 seconds.

Add turkey in large chunks, reduce heat to a little above medium.  Cook turkey chunks on one side for 3 minutes until nicely browned.  Turn turkey over and brown on the other side for 3 minutes.  Then break up turkey and cook for another 2 -3 minutes until almost cooked through.

Turn up heat on large pot of water to high.

Add sauce to turkey, stirring to combine.  Simmer meat sauce for about 5 -10 minutes until turkey is cooked through and sauce thickens.

Meanwhile cook pasta according to package directions.

When pasta is done, drain.

Spoon meat sauce over cooked noodles.  Serve with Cucumber Salad.

my “cheat” food:

cucumber salad:

sauce:

turkey browning first side:

browning on other side:

turkey broken up:

sauce added:

ready to eat!

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