Meal in a Bowl: Five-Spice Udon Noodle Bowl

Five-Spice Udon Noodle Bowl

A bowlful of hot steamy noodles swimming in yummy broth is only the beginning of a satisfying meal. When time is short and cooking is the last thing I want to do…but I’m craving something healthy and hot – it’s Noodle Bowl time!

My cupboards are well stocked with 10 lbs. of whole wheat Udon noodles, so discovering new and delicious ways of serving them is a fun challenge. Not all of my attempts have been successful! But the following recipe, inspired by one from Clean Eating magazine is bursting with flavor.  You may use any variety of Asian noodle.

Whole Wheat Udon Noodles

This aromatic bowl is flavored with Chinese five spice powder, onions and bright green Bok Choy topped with sliced seasoned chicken.  Let me tell you – if you have an Asian market close by, shop there for your baby Bok Choy and five spice powder. You will pay much less and I have often come away with a fresher product! In the Spokane area I frequent the Asian Market on North Division.

Soak Baby Bok Choy in cold water to clean

Five-Spice Udon Noodle Bowl

4 tsp. grape seed oil (divided)

1 white onion, thinly sliced

3 tsp. Chinese five-spice powder

4 cups low sodium chicken broth

¾ tsp. sea salt

3 cups chopped baby Bok Choy (separates the stalk from the leaf; slice
stalk thin; chop leaf in two inch pieces)

12 oz. whole wheat Udon noodles

2 chicken breasts sliced thin

4 green onions, thinly sliced

½ c. cilantro sprigs

½ tsp. sesame oil

2 tsp. tamari soy sauce

1 tsp. Sriracha hot chili sauce, optional

  1. Cook noodles according to package directions.  Drain and rinse. Set aside.
  2. Rinse and dry the pot you used for the noodles.  Use it to heat 2 teaspoons of the grape seed oil on medium-high flame. Add the sliced onions and cook, stirring until they are translucent, about 3-4 minutes. Add five spice powder, stirring and cooking until fragrant, about 1 minute.  Add broth and sea salt, bring to a boil.  Turn heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes.  Add the Bok Choy.  Cover pot; continue to simmer another 5 minutes.

    Veggies sliced, noodles cooked and ready to go

  3.  In a skillet or a wok, heat remaining grape seed oil, add chicken when the oil is hot enough it sizzles. Season the chicken with remaining teaspoon of five spice powder and a sprinkle or two of sea salt.
    Stir fry until chicken is cooked through, about 5 minutes. Set aside.

    Stir fried chicken breast

  4. To serve, divide noodles evenly among 4 bowls. Top each bowl with cooked chicken.  Ladle steaming broth, Bok Choy mixture over chicken, dividing evenly.  Garnish each bowl with cilantro, green onions, and a few drops of sesame oil. Drizzle soy sauce and a dash of hot chili sauce over the top, if desired. Serve immediately.
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