This post is sponsored by Blue Diamond, maker of the magical almonds in today’s recipe.
Man, do you ever have those days when your heart feels so happy and full that it just calms you down to your bones? Like, in the best and most peaceful of ways?
Yesterday was one of those for me. ♥
I woke up early in the morning feeling thankful and so dang loved after a beautiful birthday evening with all of my favorite people the night before — milling around the kitchen enjoying a dreamy buffet of chips and salsa, keeping the refills coming on everyone’s glasses with fresh margaritas, sitting around the table talking and laughing and enjoying these wonderful people until late in the evening. It was my kind of a birthday, and I’m still smiling about it!
Then, even better, I stepped outside in the morning to one of those gorgeous spring days that you dream about all winter long. The air was perfectly warm and breezy, the sun was bright and shining all day long, and it felt like blooms were flowering everywhere you turned. I immediately threw open the windows and left them open, and Henry faithfully scootched his naps across the floors following the sunbeams all day long.
Of course, it was way too gorgeous a day to stay inside. So I sent a shout-out to my neighbors seeing if people wanted to hang out by the picnic tables out back after work. And even with little planning, we had a crowd. So fun!! Everyone was almost giddy to be back outside after a winter of neighbor-nighting indoors, and stayed outside passing around chicken wings and (my leftover!) chips and salsas and cookies and beer until long after the sun had set. We even had a handful of new neighbors show up, which always makes me so happy to see our little tradition living on.
Anyway, it was one of those really good ones. And made me hopeful about this next year of life. And made me feel like I’m right where I’m supposed to be.
So I soaked it up! And I made a big batch of these springy sesame noodles to share at neighbornight, because naturally noodles are what you bring to celebrate a perfect spring day, right?! ;)
They sure are in my book, at least! :)
Actually, I’ve been craving sesame noodles for awhile now, and happened to have a huge head of broccoli waiting for me in the fridge. So I chopped it up Dana Carvey-style and sauteed it up with some garlic while the noodles cooked.
Then, in a moment of brilliant inspiration, I decided to chop up a bunch of these Wasabi and Soy Sauce almonds from Blue Diamond and add them to the mix for an extra kick. (<– Oh my goodness, I am absolutely obsessed with snacking on these things lately. They’re my new fix when I have a sushi craving, and they are the absolute best.)
Then I tossed everything together with a simple sesame-soy vinaigrette, sprinkled on a few sesame seeds and green onions and crushed red pepper flakes for garnish…
…and voila. These beautiful, colorful, fabulously-flavorful noodle bowls were ready to go. And even better? They were ready to go in just 20 minutes. Because on a spring week as gorgeous as this one, it would be a crime to be stuck inside around the stove. ;)
Feel free to add in some extra protein if you’d like. And of course, any other fresh veggies that you have on hand would also be delicious mixed into the saute as well, as well as any other varieties of almonds. But if you have the time to track down a can of the Wasabi and Soy Sauce almonds, I’m telling you, you won’t regret it.
Hope you all enjoy this one, and I wish us all many more beautiful days ahead this spring!
optional garnishes: thinly-sliced green onions, toasted sesame seeds, coarsely-ground black pepper, crushed red pepper flakes
Sesame-Soy Vinaigrette Ingredients:
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon freshly-cracked black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon sriracha or hot chili oil
To Make The Noodles:
Cook noodles al dente in a large stockpot of salted water according to package instructions. Drain, and set aside.
Meanwhile, as the pasta is cooking, heat oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the broccoli florets and season with a few pinches of salt and pepper. Saute, stirring once a minute or so, for 4-5 minutes until it is slightly charred around the edges and cooked through. Stir in the garlic and continue sauteing for 1-2 minutes, stirring frequently, until the garlic is cooked and fragrant. Remove from heat and set aside.
When the pasta is drained, return it to the large stockpot, and stir in the cooked broccoli and garlic, almonds, and sauce until everything is evenly combined.
Serve immediately, topped with your desired garnishes. Or refrigerate the noodles in a sealed container for up to 3 days. (This dish is also awesome when served chilled.)
To Make The Sauce:
Whisk all ingredients together until combined. Set aside.
This post has been sponsored by Blue Diamond Almonds. Clearly, I’m a big fan, and am happy to be partnering with them to bring you more delicious almond-y recipes on the blog this year.
Oh this sounds perfect for a quick and easy weeknight meal! That sauce sounds right up my alley ;)
Thanks Alexa — we hope you love it!
So pretty!! I love making these types of meals during the week because they always last at least two more days. Gorgeous shots!
Thank you Christina — we hope you enjoy this! :)
Kweel combination. Looks awesome. Wanna try this out.sriracha spunds new to me. :)will get you my review soon. ??
I saw this pop up in my Facebook newsfeed this morning and thought, “Perfect!! That’s what I’ll make for dinner… Just gotta pop by the store and pick up a few things after pick-up at school.”
Thanks a bunch for the recipe!!! It was fantastic!
I’ll note that I added a bit and cheated on the sauce. Added: sliced chicken, sliced onion, yellow mini-peppers, shreadded carrot, a bit of thinly sliced lemon grass -all stir fried in the wock; included the broccoli, minced garlic, grated ginger, and a bit of Thai basil.
I cheated on the sauce by using Cardini’s Roasted Asian Sesame Dressing, which I found in the salad dressing isle at Fred Meyer (Kroger to some of you depending on location). That is goooood dressing too!
Those Wasabi & Soy Sauce Almonds by Blue Diamond are a favorite here so my guys were glad to see a big bag of them come in the grocery haul. I believe those almonds are what took this salad to the next level, lending that fabled Unami element to the mix. The kick of the wasabi wasn’t bothersome at all and I realized I probably could have snuck these on my 8-year old’s plate without her notice, rather than buying the small can of plain roasted & salted almonds for her.
I used Chinese egg noodles -the package says “Nanka Seimen” on it and they look like thick spaghetti but are cooked slightly different. I believe some rice noodles would go well also.
So, Thanks, again –your timely post saved family dinner tonight.
Thanks for sharing KarieAnn! We’re so happy you enjoyed this, and your modifications sound wonderful (especially that Thai basil and lemongrass – yum!) :)
Belated Happy Birthday Ali! So happy to read you had an awesome birthday party and a lovely spring morning-after! ;-) Wishing you a very happy year, full of lovely events and memories, lots of laughter and delicious food, and countless moments spent with your loved ones! :-)
Adding this to the lunch menu! So delicious!
Thanks Lori — we hope you enjoy! :)
This looks delicious! I broke my ankle Friday – so I think I’m gonna have to have a delivery from my local grocery store AND these ingredients will be on the list!! ; o )
Oh no! We’re so sorry about your ankle! We hope you heal quickly and that you enjoy this recipe!
Looks deliciously amazing! :)
Yum! What a delicious looking dinner, especially those sesame noodles!
Yum!! This would be perfect as leftovers for work lunches too. I need to try those almonds..I’m obsessed with the salt and vinegar ones!
We hope you can give it a try soon Molly! :)
This is really delicious- comment from my hubby. Mamma you are excellent – by my kids . All credits goes to you for giving me a wonderful recipe idea.
Awww thanks for sharing — we’re so happy these were a hit with your family! :D
Wow! This looks so tasty and I’m loving the simplicity of it. Especially loving that this can be served cold too. Yum yum yum.
Thanks Melissa — we hope you love it! :)
Blue Diamond isn’t very mainstream here in the UK so I’ll have make do with dry roasting some almonds in wasabi and tamari sauce instead. I have some gluten free soba noodles I can use for this and had delivery of a broccoli head recently in my veg box. Looking forward too trying this out.
That sounds wonderful Verity! And we hope you enjoy the recipe!
This was fast, easy and delicious! We are vegetable eaters and recommend doubling the broccoli.
Hubby said, “You can make this again any time.” And I will.
It is easily adaptable if you want it hotter, or skip the sriracha/chili oil if you want no heat at all.
And now that we’ve tried wasabi soy almonds, we have a dangerous new treat in the house!
Thanks for the post, Ali. Cheers!
Thanks for sharing Joyce — we’re happy you and your husband enjoyed this! :)
This was amazingly good (and vegan)! thank you!!
Thanks Catherine — we’re so happy you enjoyed it!
Did you use toasted sesame oil in the dressing or just regular sesame oil?? Either way, I’m making this tonight!
Hi Brenna! We used toasted sesame oil. We hope you enjoy!
Nice one.. i tried this.. 5/5 .. thanks for the recipe dear..
We’re glad you enjoyed it, Sherry!
I made this and thought it was Really good! I will make it again and I will double the amount of broccoli. The recipe was fast and easy and will be a “go-to” for a quick meal. Thank you.
We’re happy you enjoyed this, Sharon — we appreciate you giving the recipe a try!
Tried this evening loved it. Looking forward to tasty leftovers for unchanged tomorrow.
Thank you for quick easy and delicious.
We’re so happy you enjoyed it, Jennifer! :)
This one has become a staple in our house! Great flavors!
Awesome, so happy to hear it!
tried it awesome
This was sooo good. A staple for sure. Tastes great cold or warmed up. Thank you for great recipe!
This was a hit for my family– only broccoli makes my stomach really unhappy. Which is a bummer because I love it. Any suggestions as to another vegetable I could add so I can enjoy it too?
Gonna try .. Love the easy ingredients.
Easy and delicious. Made it exactly as listed and my family was eating the broccoli! They normally don’t eat broccoli. Thank you!
Delicious and easy to make.
This was right up my alley for a busy Monday dinner. Unfortunately it turned out exceedingly too salty for us. I followed the recipe by the letter, so I’m wondering what could have gone wrong. Will cut down on the soy sauce next time and try again.
Not impressed with this recipe at all.
We have now made this dish several times. Sadly those particular almonds are not available here in New Zealand but we make do with an inferior substitute! Sometimes we cut up cooked chicken or left-over cooked fish and add at the end of cooking. It’s a great meal, with the protein added or not.