Why This Recipe Works
This noodle bowl, inspired by the sweet, savory, and spicy flavors of Southeast Asia, is a real stunner, boasting a colorful medley of simple but texturally interesting toppings. We combined tender rice noodles with savory edamame, tangy lightly pickled carrots, and crunchy cabbage, and we draped it all with a rich peanut sauce that's a little spicy, a little sweet, and enlivened with a hint of curry powder for aromatic appeal. Instead of taking the time to pickle our carrots in advance of making the dish, we simply added seasoned rice vinegar to shredded carrots and let them sit while the rice noodles soaked and softened. After the 20-minute noodle soaking period, we started the cooking process by first quickly sautéing the edamame just until it was speckled brown but still maintained a tender-crisp texture and fresh flavor. After removing the edamame from the skillet, we finished cooking the noodles in the same pan with half of our sauce and some water until the noodles were perfectly tender and chewy. Cooking the noodles in the sauce lightly glazed and flavored them. After topping our noodle bowls with the veggies, we added plenty of garnishes—fragrant Thai basil, chopped peanuts, lime wedges, and a light pour of additional sauce were the perfect finish.
Serves 4 to 6
If you can't find Thai basil you can substitute regular basil. We prefer the flavor of seasoned ricevinegar to pickle the carrots in this recipe.
1 cup shredded carrots
2 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar
12 ounces (¼-inch wide) rice noodles
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 cup frozen edamame
1 recipe Curried Peanut Sauce (see recipe below)
1 cup shredded red cabbage
⅓ cup dry-roasted peanuts, chopped
2 tablespoons torn fresh Thai basil
1. Combine carrots and vinegar in small bowl; set aside. Cover noodles with very hot tap water in large bowl and stir to separate. Let noodles soak until softened, pliable, and limp but not fully tender, about 20 minutes. Drain noodles.
2. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Add edamame and cook until spotty brown but still bright green, about 2 minutes; transfer to bowl. In now-empty skillet, heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil over medium heat until shimmering, add drained noodles, 1¼ cups water, and ½ cup peanut sauce and cook until sauce has thickened slightly and noodles are well coated and tender, about 1 minute.
3. Divide noodles among individual serving bowls, then top with carrots, edamame, and cabbage. Drizzle with remaining peanut sauce, sprinkle with peanuts and basil, and serve with lime wedges.