I have been wanting to make almond sauce for noodle dishes since I cannot eat peanuts. This almond sauce is a twisted version of the traditional Indonesian peanut sauce. In Indonesia a root vegetable similar to ginger – galangal is used in preparation of this sauce. This noodle dish is a twisted version of Thai dish without any added sauce in it. The aromatic almond sauce gives a rich taste and flavor to this noodle dish. While making this sauce, I thought this can be even used as a dip for pita chips. The sauce can be thickened a little more and garnished with finely chopped tomato and cilantro to be used as a dip. I have to explore more on this regarding other spices to be included for a dip.
For the noodle dish:
- 4 oz rice noodles
- 2 medium carrots cut into match sticks
- 1 cup shredded cabbage
- 5 oz bean sprouts
- 2-3 teaspoons cooking oil
- Salt to taste
For the Almond Sauce:
- 1 teaspoon cooking oil
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped onion
- 1 clove garlic chopped into fine pieces
- 1/4 inch piece of ginger crushed
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds crushed
- 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
- 2 tablespoons almond butter (crunchy butter)
- 3/4 teaspoon lemon juice
- Hot water
- Salt to taste
- 1/2 of small red onion thinly sliced
- Oil for deep or shallow frying
- 1 Spring onion cut into 1/4 inch pieces
- Cilantro leaves chopped
- Cucumber cut into matchstick pieces
- Cook noodles according to package directions and drain. Run over cold water to remove any sticky starch. Set aside
- In a large skillet add oil and when hot add carrots and saute in medium-high heat for about 5 minutes.
- Add shredded cabbage to the skillet and saute for another 5 minutes.
- Wash and drain bean sprouts well. Add bean sprouts to the skillet and increase heat to high. Saute for about 2-3 minutes. The bean sprouts should still be crunchy and firm.
- Turn heat to very low and add cooked noodles and mix well. Season with salt. Let stand in low flame for a minute. Turn off the flame and cover and let stand.
To make the sauce:
- In a small skillet add oil and when hot add garlic and onion and fry until lightly browned.
- Add crushed cumin, chili powder, and ginger and fry for another minute.
- Add almond butter and lemon juice and mix well and cook in low flame.
- The sauce tend to become very thick sticky – to a dough consistency. In that circumstance add hot water 1 tablespoon at a time and cook on low flame until sauce consistency is reached. (I had to add about 1/4 cup hot water 1 tablespoon at a time).
- The sauce tend to thicken once cool. If it gets very thick, just before serving add a little bit of hot water and mix thoroughly.
- Garnish with chopped cilantro.
To prepare the garnish:
- Fry the onion until browned and drain on paper towel. keep it in a warm place so it stays crunchy. (you can either shallow fry or deep fry. I deep fried since it gives the fried onion nice and crispy consistency)
- Split cucumber length wise and remove seeds. Cut them into matchstick pieces.
- Chop cilantro into small pieces. Cut spring onion into about 1/4 inch pieces.
- Add noodles to a plate and sprinkle with sauce.
- Sprinkle chopped spring onion and cilantro. Top with fried onion and add the cucumber.
- Yield: 2 main dish.