Monday can be torture. The solution? An exotic pasta that can be thrown together in 30 minutes flat!
3 tablespoons toasted sesame oil, divided
3 scallions, root ends trimmed and thinly sliced
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 small package chicken breast fillets (3/4-1 pound), thinly sliced across the grain
Chinese five-spice powder, to taste
Reduced-sodium soy sauce, to taste
1/2 pound dry linguine
1/2 head napa cabbage, thinly shredded with your chef's knife
2 large carrots, shredded
5 oz. package sliced shitake mushrooms
1 tsp. minced ginger from a jar (from the produce aisle)
Pinch red pepper flakes
1/2 pound fresh bean sprouts
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/4 cup dry sherry
1/4 cup chicken broth
3 tablespoons fresh cilantro, minced
Have the ingredients prepped and ready to go!
Heat your largest nonstick skillet over medium heat; pour in 1 tablespoon sesame oil. When the oil becomes fragrant, add scallion and garlic. Saute for 1 minute. Add chicken and sprinkle with five-spice powder. Saute for five minutes or until cooked through. Splash with a bit of soy sauce, approximately 2 tablespoons.
Meanwhile, bring a pot of water to boil for the pasta. Boil it for 7 minutes; drain and set aside.
Remove chicken from pan with slotted spoon. Add another tablespoon of oil. Increase the heat slightly. Add cabbage, carrots and mushrooms. Saute for two minutes. Make a well in the middle of the pan; add ginger and red pepper flakes. Heat for a few seconds and stir the mixure into the vegetables. Season to taste with soy sauce.
Add pasta, chicken and bean sprouts to the pan. Toss with tongs or wooden spoons. Mix together cornstarch, sherry, the last tablespoon of oil and chicken broth. Stir into the noodles. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until heated through. Stir in the cilantro. Taste for seasoning. More soy? Salt? Five-spice? How's the texture? If it seems a little dry, add a little more broth. Or sesame oil :) Yummmm!