This comes from Ali Slagle in NYTimes cooking and, for a simple recipe, it has such a wonderful depth flavor. You can dial up the heat by using a few more red pepper flakes if you like. It’s a fairly easy recipe to put together and it works as a side or as a main dish. Replace the chicken with tofu or mushrooms to make it vegetarian.

For this you’ll need: 1/2-3/4 lb of chicken (breast or thighs, chopped into 1/2″ pieces), 10-12 oz noodle (e.g. ramen or udon), 1-1/2 Tbsp red pepper flakes, 1-1/2 Tbsp soy sauce, 1-1/2 Tbsp sesame oil, 1/2 cup + 2Tbsp vegetable or grapeseed oil, 6 Tbsp salted & roasted peanuts, rind of 1/2 orange (peeled into 3″ strips), 1/4 chopped scallions.

In an oven proof bowl combine the red pepper flakes, soy sauce and sesame oil. Set aside.

Put the 1/2 cup vegetable oil into a large skillet and heat over medium heat. Add the peanuts and orange rind once the oil is hot and cook until peanuts are just browning – about 3-4 mins – shaking the pan a few times to ensure one side doesn’t brown too much. Remove from heat and allow the mixture to cool slightly then pour all of it into the bowl with the soy/sesame oil mixture (it may sizzle and splatter so be careful).

Add another 1-2 Tbsp oil to the same skillet over medium heat and add the chopped chicken. Toss well to ensure everything is coated and then allow to settle and cook until one side is browned – about 4-5 mins. Then toss again to turn everything and brown the other side – 2-3 mins. Add in the noodles (and perhaps another splash of sesame oil) and gently toss everything together to coat the noodles and combine well. Allow to cook over medium/low heat for another 2-3 minutes so that the noodles soften (depending on what type of noodle you use, you may need to part boil them prior to this step, but some noodles will cook just fine in this fashion).

Place the noodles and chicken into a serving bowl and add the spicy oil sauce over the top. Toss well and add the chopped scallions over the top for serving.

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