Sesame Noodles with Swiss Chard and Chicken

December 11, 2016
14 Ratings
Photo by Alexandra Stafford
Author Notes

Adapted from a recipe in Chrissy Teigen's cookbook Cravings.

I've added a heap of Swiss chard to make this more of a stand-alone dish, but know that it's optional or replaceable—spinach, shredded cabbage or romaine might be nice as would julienned carrots or sweet potatoes.

Many other adaptations can be made here, too: If you're vegetarian, leave out the chicken. Sub in protein of your choice—oven-baked tofu might be nice. For the peanut oil, use grapeseed, canola, or olive. For the red wine vinegar, use rice, white balsamic, apple cider—any vinegar really. If you prefer chicken thighs, use them. I'm typically a thigh person, but I actually prefer breasts here.

Chili oil—I never know what to buy when I see this ingredient, so I make my own: simply heat neutral oil or olive oil with crushed red pepper flakes over medium heat until the oil just begins to shimmer. Remove pan from heat. Let cool, then strain (or don't) into a storage vessel. I think I use about 1/4 cup pepper flakes per cup of oil—it's very spicy. —Alexandra Stafford

  • Serves 4
  • 8 ounces boneless skinless chicken breast
  • 8 ounces dried fettuccine
  • 6 ounces Swiss chard, leaves removed from stems, torn into small pieces
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1/4 cup peanut oil
  • 1/4 cup well-stirred tahini
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons chili oil
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, optional
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 6 scallions, thinly sliced
  • Kosher salt
In This Recipe
  1. Fill a large saucepan 2/3 full of water and bring to a boil over high heat. Salt it so that it tastes good, add the chicken breast, and remove the pot from the heat. Cover and let the chicken sit until cooked but very tender, about 15 minutes. (If you’re using two smaller breasts, decrease the time by about 3 minutes.) Remove the chicken from the water (don’t throw it away!) and cut into it to check its doneness; if it’s still a little pink, return it to the water for another minute or two. Remove the chicken to a plate and let it rest while you cook the noodles.
  2. Bring the water the chicken was cooked in back to a boil over high heat. Add the fettuccine, and cook to al dente according to the package directions. Place the chard in a large colander.
  3. Meanwhile, make the sauce: in a small bowl, whisk together 1 teaspoon of the sesame oil, the peanut oil, tahini, soy sauce, vinegar, chili oil, honey, cayenne, if using, and garlic until smooth. Note: It's very spicy without the cayenne, but if you like heat, start with 1/4 tsp. cayenne, then add more to taste.
  4. Drain the pasta directly over the chard, and shake the colander to allow water to drain out. Transfer chard and noodles to a large bowl. Toss with the remaining teaspoon of sesame oil.
  5. Shred the chicken with your hands into the bowl of noodles and chard. Add the scallions. Add the dressing and toss to coat. Serve immediately.

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I write the blog alexandra's kitchen, a place for mostly simple, sometimes fussy, and always seasonal recipes. My cookbook, Bread Toast Crumbs is available everywhere books are sold.