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Spicy Udon Noodles with Wilted Watercress

Scott Phillips

Servings: 4 as a main course; 6 as a side dish

Watercress curls and twirls along with the noodles in this full-flavored dish. The cooling cucumbers balance the hot sambal oelek in the sauce for a pleasant tingle.


  • 8 oz. dried udon noodles
  • 2-1/2 Tbs. soy sauce or tamari
  • 2 tsp. sambal oelek
  • 2 tsp. Asian sesame oil
  • 1 large bunch watercress (about 7 oz.), stemmed
  • 1 Tbs. canola oil or other neutral oil
  • 5 oz. English cucumber, peeled, seeded, and cut into small dice (about 1 cup)
  • 2 scallions, green parts only, thinly sliced
  • 1 Tbs. toasted sesame seeds
  • Lime wedges, for serving

Nutritional Information

  • Calories (kcal) : 290
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 70
  • Fat (g): 8
  • Saturated Fat (g): 0.5
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 2.5
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 3.5
  • Cholesterol (mg): 0
  • Sodium (mg): 890
  • Carbohydrates (g): 43
  • Fiber (g): 4
  • Protein (g): 11


  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add the noodles and cook according to package directions until done. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, sambal oelek, and sesame oil.
  • Drain the noodles in a colander set in the sink. Immediately put the watercress in the hot pot. Return the noodles to the pot, add the canola oil, and toss to combine and wilt the watercress. Add the sauce and toss until well incorporated. Serve warm or at room temperature, topped with the cucumber, scallions, and sesame seeds, with the lime wedges on the side.


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