Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Paleo Chicken & Kelp Noodle Stir-Fry

I'm very curious to watch the premiere of The Taste tonight (I'm a huge Bourdain fan), and I spent some time catching up on Top Chef Seattle this weekend while making chili. I *love* to watch cooking shows while I'm creating in the kitchen; somehow it makes me feel like a real chef myself!

Since I had celebrity chefs on the brain, I thought I'd pay homage to one of my favorites this evening: Ming Tsai. I really admire him for the work he's done on food allergies. His own son suffers from wheat, soy and nut allergies. As such, Ming has quite a number of delicious Asian dishes that are also pretty easy to convert to paleo.

Tonight I reworked his Crazy Chicken-Rice Noodle Stir-Fry, with the main change being to use kelp noodles in lieu of rice. I imagine this could work with zucchini noodles as well! He named his noodles "crazy" because of the amount of heat the original recipe packs (1 tbs. of spicy sambal).

While I like things spicy, since I was making this dish for the family I reduced the amount to 1 tsp. It still had a little kick, but was definitely mild enough for all palates. Feel free to tinker with the amount you use based on preference.
Paleo Chicken & Kelp Noodle Stir-Fry
adapted from Ming Tsai

1 package kelp noodles
juice of 1/2 lemon
2 tbs. fish sauce
juice of 1/2 lime
1 tsp. palm sugar
1 tsp. chile garlic sauce
3 tbs. olive or coconut oil
3 shallots, sliced 1⁄8 inch thick
1 pound ground chicken or turkey
1⁄2 cup scallions, green and white parts, sliced 1⁄8 inch thick
1⁄4 cup basil leaves cut into 1⁄8-inch ribbons
1 lime, quartered, for garnish
chopped basil & raw cashews (optional), for garnish

Fill a shallow bowl with water. Add lemon juice and kelp noodles and allow to soak, while you bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook kelp noodles in boiling water for 5 minutes; drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl combine the fish sauce, lime juice, sugar, and sambal, and stir until the sugar is dissolved.

Heat a wok or large, heavy sauté pan over high heat. Add the oil and swirl to coat the pan. Add the shallots and stir-fry until brown, about 1 minute. Add the chicken and stir-fry, breaking up the meat, until cooked through, about 3 minutes.

Add the noodles and sauce mixture and heat through, stirring. Add the scallions and basil ribbons and toss well. Garnish with the lime wedges, basil and chopped cashews (if using) and serve.