When I visited San Diego to compete in the San Diego Crew Classic and train in the double with Jess, I had the pleasure of staying with my sister, Liz, for a few nights. On Saturday evening, on the eve of my race, Liz invited Shelly, her new San Diego friend, over for dinner. I arrived home with groceries and a plan, and put Liz and Shelly to work. I was in a spiralizing mood, and decided to try out daikon radish noodles for the first time. I had seen a recipe for daikon noodle pad thai in the Williams Sonoma spiralizing cookbook called The Spiralizer Cookbook (thanks Morgan!) but decided I did not want to strictly follow that pad thai recipe. In the spirit of pad thai, I paired our noodles with colorful vegetable ingredients, a flavorful peanut sauce with fresh chopped garlic and ginger, and tender bites of chicken and a single scrambled egg. We topped our noodle dish with a wedge of lime and a generous helping of Sriracha sauce. Everyone went back for seconds!
We noted that the daikon radishes were much harder to spiralize than zucchinis; we also were using a handheld spiralizer called a “vegetti” rather than the “iPerfect Kitchen” standing spiralizer that I have at home (thanks again Georgie Fear)! Be prepared to take turns or take rest breaks if you are spiralizing daikon radishes by hand! Daikon noodles are worth the effort; the daikon radish has a bite to it, and the noodle texture holds peanut sauce well. Thanks to Liz for hosting this meal, and for inviting Shelly over to cook and enjoy dinner with us. As usual, Liz’s puppy Gracie kept a watchful eye over our cooking just in case any morsels fell to the floor. Liz, Shelly and I had enough energy to listen to music and clean up our dishes to have a fresh kitchen for the next morning. We ate early and got drowsy watching Modern Family and sipping tea. That’s my idea of a perfect pre-race evening!
Daikon Noodle Pad Thai – serves 3
Plan ahead so you are not hungry while you are spiralizing. Once prepared these ingredients cook quickly, but the spiralizing step can take a while. Liz, Shelly and I made a double batch of sauce, and ended up having leftover sauce, so I adjusted my previous peanut sauce recipe quantities for you for this meal. The Racing Weight Cookbook authors Matt Fitzgerald and Georgie Fear deserve credit for inspiring this peanut sauce, which I adapted and have used over and over!
You will need:
- 4 or 5 daikon radishes – to yield 4 or 5 cups of spiralized noodles
- large crown of broccoli
- about 1 C baby carrots
- about 1 C sugar snap peas
- 1½ pounds chicken breast
- ½ C peanuts
- 1 lime cut into wedges
For your sauce:
- 2 C veggie broth
- 1/3 C peanut flour – we used PB2
- ½ C raw cashews
- 1½ T fresh ginger, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1½ T sriracha sauce
- 1½ T honey
- 1½ T soy sauce
- 1 t hot red pepper flakes if you like spicy sauce
- Peel and spiralize your radishes. Set aside.
- Chop all of your vegetable ingredients.
- Cut chicken into bite sized pieces.
- Prepare peanut sauce and leave on the stovetop at a low simmer: bring vegetable broth to a simmer, adding liquid ingredients. Add peanut flour, stirring until combined. Add garlic, ginger and cashews. For extra heat, add 1t or more hot red pepper flakes.
- Begin by cooking chicken pieces over medium heat with salt and pepper in a large pot or pan (you will add your daikon noodles to this pan – make sure you have room!). Add about one third of your peanut sauce to flavor the chicken while it cooks. Stir to coat with sauce, and keep stirring occasionally until chicken pieces are cooked through.
- Next, set a medium or large pan over medium heat and add your veggies. Add one cup of water and cover with a lid to steam veggies. Once veggies begin to feel tender, add a third of your sauce and stir to coat. Continue cooking and checking vegetables until they have reached desired tenderness.
- At this point, combine noodles with chicken pieces and add the rest of your peanut sauce. Stir to coat and cook noodles for about five minutes or until tender. Noodles should take on the color of the peanut sauce.
- Meanwhile, crush peanuts in a Ziploc bag with a mallet or the side of a can.
- Serve noodles and chicken in bowls topped with plenty of veggies. Add a lime wedge, crushed peanuts and Sriracha sauce.
Sauce inspiration: Fitzgerald, Matt, and Georgie Fear. “Asian Chicken with Peanut Sauce.” Racing Weight Cookbook: Lean, Light Recipes for Athletes. Boulder: Velopress, 2013. 230-231. Print.
The Williams-Sonoma Cookbook: The Spiralizer Cookbook. Weldon Owen, 2015. Print.