Cooking Classes


Casual Friday - The Chinese Takeout Cookbook

 Okay, so I have two Casual Friday posts this week! I had to get this recipe posted by February 24 to qualify for prizes. I forgot until this morning. Call it a bonus!

Oops! I just reread the rules and they won't ship any prizes outside the U.S. I guess I'll have to buy the book!

This cookbook is hitting all the papers right now and looks downright interesting. I have been following her blog, Appetite for China for quite some time now. Until this little push, I have to say that I have been intimidated to make any of her recipes. Now I might win some nice prizes if I participate in their virtual Chinese New Year dinner. This is the recipe I have chosen.

This is such a simple and tasty salad to make. I liked all the options if we were not able to find the ingredients locally. And I did have to use spaghetti. It was great. I had to use tahini with sesame oil rather than Chinese sesame paste and sriachi rather than chili paste. I had Szechuan peppers and used just a touch. This had just the right amount of heat. I can see making this salad with peas or snap peas and even kernel corn. Next time I would cut my carrots and cucumbers smaller.

Cold Sesame Noodles   adapted from The Chinese Takeout Cookbook
Serves 4 as a main or 6 as an appetizer
  • 12 ounces dried spaghetti or Chinese egg noodles
  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons grated ginger
  • 1 cucumber, peeled and julienned
  • 2 carrot, peeled and julienned
  • 2 teaspoons white sesame seeds
  • 2 scallions, green parts only, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons Chinese sesame paste (or 3 tablespoons tahini with an extra teaspoon of sesame oil)
  • 2 tablespoons smooth peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons Chinese rice vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons chili paste
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground Sichuan pepper (optional)
  1. Bring a pot of water to boil and cook egg noodles or spaghetti until al dente, or the minimum amount of time according to package instructions. Drain immediately, rinse with cold water, and drain again. Toss with 1 tablespoon of the peanut oil and set aside.
  2. Heat the other tablespoon of peanut oil in a small pan over medium heat. Gently cook the minced garlic and grated ginger until just fragrant, about 30 to 40 seconds. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  3. Prepare the sauce: In a medium bowl, combine the sesame paste, peanut butter, soy sauce, sesame oil, rice vinegar, chili paste, sugar, and optional Sichuan pepper. Add 3 tablespoons of water and whisk until the mixture is smooth. Stir in the cooked garlic and ginger.
  4. Pour the sauce over the noodles, add the cucumbers and carrots, and toss. Transfer to large bowl or deep serving dish and sprinkle the sesame seeds and scallions on top. You can serve the sesame noodles at room temperature or chill in the fridge for 1 to 2 hours before serving.
Notes: Leftovers will keep in the fridge for up to 3 or 4 days.


  1. You are a busy girl today..
    Love this kind of dish~

  2. I would love to be able to make good Chinese takeout at home. I have a few good recipes but some need a lot f work.

  3. Those noodles sound delish - and indeed better (and better for your!) than takeout!

  4. Yum! I love noodles, such a great comfort food!
    This dish looks so much healthy and tastier than takeaway food, I can't wait to try it :)

  5. I like noodles prepared this way. The addition of peanut butter, and the hint of ginger makes for a light peanut dressing for the pasta.

    Very nice!


  6. YUM...what a great way to cook noodles. Must try!

  7. Hi there! great stuff. Thanks for sharing a very interesting and informative content, it helps me a lot, keep it up!

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