Welcome back to Recipe Week!
(If you’re a subscriber and you get my posts by email, yesterday’s post didn’t email for some reason, but it’s there! So be sure and look back for yesterday’s recipe- Snickerdoodle Pie and Pumpkin Ice Cream!)
Today’s post offers a recipe that’s fun for a date night at home.
In the early years of our marriage, when Joel and I were in need of a date night, but money was tight, we would plan what we called “den dates”. The girls were little and still went to bed pretty early in the evening. So, on our den date nights, I would feed them their dinner early, put them to bed, and then Joel and I would curl up in the den to enjoy a quiet dinner or maybe a movie and popcorn. Now, I’m a big advocate of families eating together, but this would be a special occasion, and date nights are so important for married couples.
Now that the girls are older, and they are sometimes gone to a friend’s house for the evening, Joel and I will do something fun with Wilton early in the evening and then have our den date after he goes to bed. If we feel like cooking, we’ll get in the kitchen and try a new Asian dish. Going out to dinner is fun and special, and sometimes we just need to get out, but we also love eating at home, and it sure saves a lot of money!
Here’s a noodle bowl we tried recently for one of our den dates. It was so good!!
Chicken Noodle Bowl with Peanut-Ginger Sauce
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
4 1/2 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
3 Tbsp. soy sauce
3 Tbsp. honey
2 Tbsp. peeled and chopped fresh ginger
1 1/2 tsp. sesame oil
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper
3 Tbsp. rice vinegar
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
Chicken Noodle Bowl
8 cups water
2 Tbsp. rice vinegar
1 Tbsp. kosher salt
6 oz. rice noodles or bean threads
3 cups shredded cooked chicken
3 cups shredded napa cabbage
1 1/2 cups halved and thinly sliced seedless cucumber
1 1/2 cups matchstick carrots
1 1/2 cups thinly sliced red bell pepper
6 Tbsp. chopped lightly salted dry-roasted peanuts
Prepare the sauce: Process all 9 ingredients in a blender or food processor until smooth
Prepare the Chicken Noodle Bowl: Microwave water in a large bowl on HIGH 10 minutes. Stir vinegar and salt into boiling water. Add noodles and let stand until softened, about 5 minutes (ours took much longer). Drain noodles.
Divide the noodles, chicken, cabbage, cucumber, carrots, and bell pepper among 6 bowls. Top each bowl with 1 Tbsp. peanuts and 2 Tbsp. Peanut-Ginger Sauce. Serve remaining sauce on the side.
This recipe came from the June 2016 Southern Living magazine.
This noodle bowl would also make a fun dish when having friends over. Just put out all the toppings in and let everyone build their own noodle bowl!
And here’s the deconstructed 6-year old version, below. We had all the components prepared before Wilton went to bed, so this was his dinner. He got the giraffe chopsticks in his Christmas stocking last year. Aren’t they cute!
Now, if we are tired and don’t feel like cooking, we might just have a bowl of popcorn with a movie, or a snack plate.
Our snack plates might include some meats, cheeses, olives, fruit, crackers, hummus, and chicken salad.
If the temps are pleasant outside, our “den dates” might move outdoors. So I guess that makes it a “porch date”!
So, now it’s your turn! In what ways do you “get away” while staying at home?