Thursday, November 8, 2012

Japanese 7-Spice Kelp Noodles

I love trying new spices and seasonings, so I am very excited that the President's Choice Black Label line now has a bunch of new spice blends available.  My most recent find: Shichimi Togarashi, or Japanese 7-Spice blend.


It's a combination of crushed red chili flakes, sea salt, Szechiuan peppercorns, black and white sesame seeds, poppy seeds, orange zest, wasabi powder and nori seaweed flakes.

I make Japanese-inspired dishes all the time, but resort to the same old flavours most of the time: miso, soy, sesame, ginger and garlic.  I was so excited to be able to liven things up a bit.

This dish is easy and tasty, although be warned that this seasoning packs punch.  I used 1 tsp, which ended up being too spicy for me, and I have a high tolerance for heat!  I recommend 1/4-1/2 tsp, or, if you don't like heat at all, make your own at home and omit the red chili flakes.  You'll get all the flavour without the heat.

I served these noodles with a mix of seafood (shrimp, calamari, mussels and clams), but you can use cubed tofu, cooked adzuki beans, chicken, beef or fish as your protein instead.

Japanese 7-spice Kelp Noodles

1/2 can tomato paste
2 tbls soy/tamari/coconut aminos
4 tbls rice vinegar, divided
3 tbls finely chopped, fresh ginger
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4-1/2 tsp Japanese 7-spice blend
1-340g bag rainbow or broccoli slaw (or chopped veggies of choice)
1 bunch green onions, sliced
1-340g bag kelp noodles, drained, rinsed and snipped
Protein of choice (optional)

Whisk together ingredients for sauce (tomato paste, soy, and 2 tbls vinegar) and set aside.  Place kelp noodles into a skillet or wok, along with 2 tbls of vinegar, garlic, ginger, and spice blend and cook over medium heat until noodles soften.  Add sauce and remaining ingredients and cook until veggies are tender.  Makes 2 main dish servings or 4 side dish servings.