I love flexible recipes like this one. I originally posted this recipe during the early days of Covid restrictions when we weren't going to the grocery store very often. At that time, I pointed out that can use your favorite sturdy noodles and your favorite crunchy veggies (or any available noodles or veggies) to customize the dish. The Spicy Peanut Sauce is the star here.

Susie Middleton

Recently I made the recipe with fresh Chinese egg noodles (lo mein), which you can find in the produce section. I think they are really my favorite match with the peanut sauce, so it is worth seeking them out. If you do use them, you'll want to start with more (by weight) than with dried pasta since they don't expand as much when cooked. Try 10 to 12 ounces fresh instead of 8 ounces dry. Use as much cilantro and as many peanuts for garnish as you like. It’s all up to you. You will probably have some extra peanut sauce; use it as a dip or serve it another night on grilled chicken.

Serves 6 to 8

  • 1 recipe Spicy Peanut Sauce
  • 8 ounces linguine or other dried pasta. (or 10 to 12 ounces fresh Chinese egg noodles)
  • Kosher Salt
  • Vegetable or sesame oil
  • 1 1/2 to 2 cups raw thinly sliced red cabbage (or any cabbage)
  • 3 to 4 cups thinly sliced or julienned raw vegetables (carrots, snap peas, snow peas, radishes, Japanese turnips, radicchio, young kale or bok choy) or blanched asparagus or broccoli
  • Chopped cilantro (at least 2 to 3 tablespoons, but as much as you like), sprigs for garnish
  • ½ cup chopped roasted peanuts (or as much as you like)
  • Sliced scallions (optional, for garnish)


1. If the peanut sauce has been refrigerated, bring it to room temperature. If it is a little thick, whisk in a little hot water until loosened.

2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta until done, about 12 minutes, or according to package instructions. Strain and rinse with cool water. Let the pasta dry in the colander or spread it out on a clean dishtowel to dry slightly. (Don’t dress the pasta while it is wet.)

3. Put the pasta in a mixing bowl and season with 1 teaspoon salt. (If the pasta is sticky, add a teaspoon or two of oil and toss.)

4. Add three-quarters of the vegetables, three-quarters of the peanut sauce, and a few tablespoons of cilantro to the bowl and toss well. Taste and add more peanut sauce if desired.

5. Transfer the noodles to a large serving bowl and garnish with the remaining raw vegetables, the chopped peanuts, and the remaining cilantro. Serve.