Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Finding My Noodles

I've been keeping myself as busy as I can in the kitchen lately - the reason being that it is officially blueberry season and we are trying to use up as much as we can. However this post is not about my blueberries, as yummy as they are.

No, I'm excited to tell you about my latest find at an asian grocery store. No matter which asian grocery store I turn to, in the States and out, they always feel the same. Oh sure, they have their differences but it is the subtle similarities that make me smile. From their overpacked shelves and aisles to the way they bag the groceries by tying the handles in a knot for you, it amazes me that there is so much continuity when it comes to customer care. When I was very young, my mom or grandma would take us kids to a Chinese grocery store called Chao's (not chaos as my baba would say) and the owner was (in my opinion) an old man who loved, and I mean loved, to pinch my cheeks and say, "Oh pretty girl!" I got pretty scared of him for a while there and would hide in my mom's overcoat whenever we'd go in just to avoid the pinchers. Later in life I would shop there on my own and the old owner would give me the same sly look and say the same sly thing but without the pinching (that would have been ackward). If ever I brought a guy in with me he would shout out, "Who's the lucky man?!?!" Well I'm glad to say that since then I've been able to bring in my husband to show who the "lucky man" is and have already exposed my child to the cheek pinching experience.

There is an asian/korean grocery store we go to every now and then when we are in St Louis . We used to go solely for their blueberry marshmallows but they no longer carry them and believe me when I say that it took great effort on my part to continue shopping there after our favorite treats were taken from us. However I am very glad we continued to go there as the lady who owns the store is very darling and she is always ready to share with me something new, and it turns out, something that's always delicious. This brings me to my finds...
Citrus Seasoned Soy Sauce and Brown Rice Vermicelli

The lady at the store was so excited to tell me about her salad recipe involving these items. While soy sauce and vermicelli are not new to me, I have never even heard of citrus flavored soy sauce and was very excited about the brown rice option for rice noodles. She quickly told me what to throw in the salad, and as most good asian cooks will do she never had specific measurements to give me. Oh well. I don't suppose I could get away with doing that to you... If you have trouble finding the above items, you can do this with plain soy sauce and rice vermicelli.

Chicken and Brown Rice Vermicelli Salad with Citrus Soy Sauce Dressing

1 chicken breast
1/2 package Brown Rice Vermicelli
1 bunch Romaine lettuce heart, chopped into bitesize pieces
1 small carrot, julliened
3-4 mushrooms, sliced (I prefer baby bella)
raw cashew pieces, toasted
toasted sesame seeds

1/2 cup Citrus Seasoned Soy Sauce
1/2 cup Sesame Oil

1) Grill or sautee chicken breast until cooked through. Slice into bitesize strips and set aside.
2) Soak vermicelli in hot water and let sit until noodles have softened through. Drain the noodles. Using kitchen shears, cut the noodles into smaller, more managable pieces (noodles in salad is strange enough without having to twirl it onto your fork so I just cut it smaller, less hassle).
3) Mix together the dressing - may need to put it in a shakeable container to ensure better mixing.
4) Lightly flavor the noodles with some of the dressing mix.
5) To assemble salad, place lettuce on the bottom, then the noodles, then chicken/carrots/mushrooms, then sprinkle cashews and sesame seeds on top. Pour dressing over salad and serve.

Serves 2 big salads. (noodles should be cool)


  1. we still need to find the blueberry marshmallows again. Yum!

  2. I continue to be impressed with your cooking abilities and your connections to great little stores.
    I have no idea how marshmallows are made, but you are the top of my list for someone who could figure out how to create blueberry marshmallows. It does sound a little messy though...

  3. That soy sauce is one of my all-time favorite Japanese grocery store items! It was one of the first things I stocked my cupboards with when we got here. I know it as ponzu. The citrus in it comes from yuzu, a unique citrus that you usually can't find in the US--kind of a cross between mandarin orange, lemon, and grapefruit. YUMMY!

  4. this looks so good, Jackie! Thanks for posting this recipe!

  5. Wow,that looks great! We have an asian market that I go to occasionally. You'll have to share more of these recipes so I can try to find the ingredients a my store here.

  6. Jackie, that looks professional. I was guessing you found a picture of it until I recognized your bowl. You are amazing! I hope I can make such yumminess sometime.

  7. That looks SOOOOO delicious!!! Can I just hire you as my personal chef?!? I could probably pay you a whoppin' $5 a day! That's totally worth it, right??? And, those blueberry marshmallows sound awesome!

  8. Lindon GrandmaJuly 23, 2008

    This looks goodness-gracious delicious. Make us some when we come out there!

  9. Lindon Grandma WelchJuly 23, 2008

    This looks goodness-gracious delicious. Make us some when we come out there!

  10. Okay, what's going on with y'all. I'm used to daily posts. IT'S BEEN OVER A WEEK NOW!!

  11. Neal, I know you stare at cancerous hamster ovaries under flourescent lights all day so you may not appreciate this, but Jackie is a really great designer. I love the way the blog (and the food :) looks. And it has been a while since you've done a post. I've gone back to watching Jon Stewart to pass the time.

  12. I couldn't help but laugh at a couple things - how the grocery bags are tied in a knot (all my filipino relatives do that) and how asians never have specific measurements (that is just like my mom!).


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