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An easy and flexible weeknight recipe for noodles involving ground chicken, mushrooms and a quick sauce that comes together from pantry/fridge ingredients. Add more vegetables if you have them, make it as spicy as you’d like, it’s all good!
Off late I’ve found ground chicken to be so convenient, to put together quick and delicious meals in so little time! No chopping and dicing and browning required, and it gives the recipe some heft without weighing you down. It’s a perfect ingredient for busy weeknights, as you’ll see with this recipe adapted from Bon Appetit magazine!
Instead of just chili oil (which is drizzled over right in the end), this recipe uses a coarse garlic and fresh chili pepper paste as the main flavor base in which the ground chicken is sautéed. The chili peppers add a pop of freshness here. You can also use finely diced boneless skinless chicken thighs or breasts here, if you prefer!
While the chicken cooks, prep a pot of water to cook the noodles. I used these whole wheat noodles that we found at a restaurant supply store during the lockdowns last year, and they work really well here. You can use any kind of noodle (even whole wheat spaghetti would work in a pinch) – just follow the cooking instructions on the package.
In a small bowl, whisk together the ingredients for the sauce (hoisin sauce, red or white miso sauce, rice vinegar and soy sauce). The miso paste used in this sauce (not a common ingredient in Chinese cooking) gives this sauce a very rounded, salty flavor, substantial texture and overall a different dimension. I’m most certainly going to use miso paste in more asian recipes since it complements the soy sauce really well!
Once the chicken is almost cooked, take it out of the pan and set the it aside. Sauté your mushrooms in the same pan (you can add other vegetables and aromatics here once the mushrooms have browned, such as thinly sliced onions, bell peppers, baby corn, diced water chestnuts). Then add the sauce, and reduce until thick and glossy.
Toss in the noodles, finish off with chopped scallions, sesame oil and chili oil, and you are all set!
I ended up making too much over the weekend, and I am happy to report that these noodles reheat well too! Just drizzle on some extra sesame oil and top with fresh scallions to wake it up!
Noodles with Chicken and Mushrooms
Adapted from Bon Appetit Magazine
Makes 6 generous servings
1 pound ground chicken
2 cups shiitake or crimini or button mushrooms, stems removed, chopped into 1 inch pieces or quartered
5 garlic cloves
6-8 red or green Thai chillies
Few pinches of table salt
1/3 cup hoisin sauce
1/4 cup red or white miso
1/4 cup rice vinegar
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 pound thin wheat noodles
2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
2 tablespoons chopped scallions
2 tablespoons sesame oil (or toasted sesame oil, if available)
2 tablespoons chili crisp or chili oil
1 tablespoon soy sauce
In a small mortar and pestle, pound together the garlic cloves, chillies and a couple pinches of salt into a coarse paste.
In a small bowl, whisk together hoisin sauce, miso, vinegar and soy sauce and set aside.
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil and cook noodles according to package directions until al dente. Drain, rinse under cool running water, and set aside, tossed in some vegetable oil.
Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil in a large wok or skillet over medium-high heat. Cook garlic mixture, stirring constantly, until softened and fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add ground chicken until almost cooked through, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
Wipe out wok and reduce heat to medium. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon vegetable oil to the wok and cook mushrooms, stirring occasionally, until browned and softened, 6–8 minutes.
Increase heat back to medium-high. Add chicken mixture and hoisin sauce mixture to the wok, and cook, stirring often, until sauce is thick and most of the liquid has evaporated, about 4-5 minutes. Add 3/4 cup water to wok and bring to a simmer, then reduce heat to low. Simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally, until thick and shiny, about 15-20 minutes.
Add the chopped scallions and cooked noodles to the wok, and combine uniformly using tongs. Drizzle sesame oil, chili oil and soy sauce over the noodles and coat noodles completely, until all noodles glisten.
Serve hot, topped with more fresh scallions and chili oil, if desired.