Spicy Peanut Butter Noodles

14 Feb

(Review by Denise)

Warning: Because this review will inevitably contain a lot of complaining (I swore I’d never make it again when I was making it), I’m going to let you know now that I’m giving “Spicy Peanut Butter Noodles” a passing grade.  Check out the recipe by Crumb right here.

I was really excited to make this. I even worked it out with my man: I’d feed the kids first and he’d help put them to bed early while I cooked this for just the two of us. Dinner date on the couch! Catch up on some Walking Dead! I also get excited to eat with chopsticks because they make me feel like a rock star. I was smart, too: I chopped all the veggies ahead of time and put out all the ingredients on the countertop. I looked like I should have a cooking show.

The trouble began when I had the thought, “Don’t put the garlic in the hot oil first, because the sugars will make it burn while you’re spooning out the ginger and red pepper flakes.” Smart, no? No. Because my next thought was, “Put the ginger in first, instead.” Well hello!? They make ginger candies and cookies. I realize now that ginger has sugar in it, too. First it made the oil splatter as far as my neighbor’s roof, and then (despite turning the heat down to low while scalding my forearm in oil splatters) it burned the ginger anyway. I tried my best to spoon out the blackened ginger and only keep the remaining bits. (I had pretty much used all I had on the first go-round.) From there on out, the oil just hated me.  The noodles were one big glob when I added them back to the pan (I really did oil them while they waited!) and then it took a while for the peanut butter sauce to act like a sauce. This isn’t my first stir-fry rodeo, but something here just went awry. Again I say, I looked like I should have a cooking show: America’s Worst Chef.

But despite cursing under my breath and swearing I would never make it again, something awful happened. I loved it. My man loved it. The spice was enough to require a glass of milk, but not so spicy that the flavors got lost. The peanut butter was divine. I am so excited to eat the leftovers because I know they will be even spicier. The book of Romans in the Bible talks about how showing kindness to your enemy will “heap burning coals upon his head.” This recipe’s deliciousness in spite of my bitterness heaped burning coals upon my head. Well played, Spicy Peanut Butter Noodles. Well played.

Verdict? Pass. (Remember? I already told you.) I am hoping you fall under one of two categories: 1, You never would have made my mistakes in the first place. 2, You can learn from my mistakes above.

After all that, what do you think?


6 Responses to “Spicy Peanut Butter Noodles”

  1. Isabelle @ Crumb February 14, 2012 at 9:54 am #

    Denise, I *love* this blog idea… it’s brilliant! 🙂 And thanks so much for reviewing my recipe so honestly, too.
    I’m really glad that the recipe redeemed itself in the end, despite the hiccups along the way. I actually do a proper mise en place for stir fries because they’re not as forgiving of my usual chop-as-you-go style. To get around the burnt-garlic problem, I usually measure out the ginger and garlic into a little pinch bowl, so that I can dump them in the wok at the same time, and have my other ingredients standing by to go into the wok ASAP.
    (BTW, totally normal for the peanut butter to glom together and refuse to turn into sauce at first… but after a couple of minutes the heat should melt it down into a more sauce-like consistency. Guess I should have included a warning in the recipe!)

    • Pin Eat Review February 14, 2012 at 12:06 pm #

      Thanks, Isabelle, for your tips! I saw on your site that you were “born with your mouth open,” so I take your advice to heart. I can’t wait to give it a second go without the mishaps. (By the way, the I just ate the leftovers for lunch and they were so good with that extra spice.)

  2. Madison February 14, 2012 at 1:42 pm #

    This looks delicious! Printing off the recipe as we speak. Love your blog, such a great idea!! I’ll be tuned in!

    xx, madison

  3. Blaine February 15, 2012 at 3:58 am #

    This really is the knowledge I needed. Thank you writing this article.

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