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Crispy Noodle Cakes with Hoisin Chicken

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Serves 2

  • by Tony Rosenfeld from Fine Cooking
    Issue 104

This recipe calls for dried rice vermicelli, the rice flour version of Italy’s classic thin pasta. Here, the cooked vermicelli is formed into cakes, pan-fried until crisp, and topped with a savory mixture of chicken, mushrooms, and spinach.

  • 1/4 lb. dried rice sticks (vermicelli)
  • 1 Tbs. plus 1 tsp. Asian sesame oil
  • 2 small boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 3/4 lb.), cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1 tsp. dry sherry
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 Tbs. hoisin sauce
  • 1 Tbs. soy sauce
  • 2 tsp. rice vinegar
  • 3 Tbs. canola oil
  • 3-1/2 oz. shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and thinly sliced (1-1/2 cups)
  • 4 oz. baby spinach (4 lightly packed cups)
  • Asian chile sauce, like Sriracha (optional)

Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Remove the pot from the heat, add the noodles, and soak them until tender, about 5 minutes. Drain, transfer to a baking sheet lined with paper towels, and pat dry. Toss the noodles with 1 Tbs. of the sesame oil.

Toss the chicken with the remaining 1 tsp. sesame oil, the sherry, and 1/4 tsp. salt.

In a small bowl, mix the hoisin sauce, soy sauce, and vinegar.

Heat 1-1/2 Tbs. of the canola oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering hot. Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring, until softened and lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Add the chicken and cook, stirring, until it just loses its raw color, about 2 minutes. Add the spinach and cook, stirring, until it wilts, about 1 minute. Add the hoisin mixture and cook, stirring, until the chicken is cooked through, about 1 minute. Transfer to a bowl.

Wipe out the skillet with a paper towel. Heat the remaining 1-1/2 Tbs. oil over medium heat. Divide the noodles in half and spread them in the pan, forming two oblong cakes (if they become entangled, just cut them apart with scissors). Sprinkle lightly with salt and cook until the bottoms are lightly browned and crisp, 4 to 5 minutes. Flip, sprinkle lightly with salt, and cook until the second sides are browned and crisp, about 4 minutes more. Transfer to serving plates, top with the chicken, and serve with chile sauce, if using.

Serving Suggestions

Serve with Soy-Braised Kabocha Squash.

nutrition information (per serving):
Calories (kcal): 750; Fat (g): 35; Fat Calories (kcal): 310; Saturated Fat (g): 4; Protein (g): 42; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 18; Carbohydrates (g): 60; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 11; Sodium (mg): 1240; Cholesterol (mg): 95; Fiber (g): 4;

Photo: Pernille Pedersen

The dish needs more seasoning. I think if the chicken was marinated before sautéing and a few scallions were added, it might be a 5 star recipe

Delicious, but how in the world does this have 35 grams of fat per serving?????

I really enjoyed this recipe--pretty darned easy to make, straightforward, and though there's a heap of sodium, best of all, it was delicious. I agree with a previous reviewer who was hesitant at first bite...but it was really tasty on the second...and successive bites! The crunchy noodle cakes added not only some novelty to the dish, but extra texture and a good neutral base for the rest of the dish.

Really yummy, fast and easy to make! Was best the day of. The leftover noodle cakes weren't so good.

It was great - simple to make with easy to find ingredients. It was underwhelming at first but the more I ate the yummier it got! lol The crunchy noodles were a nice touch.

Loved it. So far all the recipes in this noodle story from the April/May issue have been wonderful!

We have made this recipe at least 4 times since it was published in the April/May issue. My husband requests this often. So simple and it is our go to Asian chicken dish these days. Love the Spinach and Shitakes with the crispy noodle underneath we highly recommend it.

I followed this recipe so I don't think it was cooking error on my part. I just didn't like it at all. Definitely won't be making it again. I was bummed too because it sounded really good.

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