There are people who like pasta and people who love pasta, and those in the latter group are inspirational at turning it into a nutritional meal.
Cold tossed pasta hits the spot in the spring, and since the noodles aren't steaming hot, it can be accompanied by a variety of tasty foods that also fortify it with nutrition. You can mix and match flavor combinations, and below are some of my favorite add-ins.
The best cold pasta add-ins
- Pine nuts
- Goat cheese
- Grilled chicken
- Chopped cooked asparagus
- Sesame seeds
- Chili flakes
I used to be obsessed with the spicy sesame noodles at the Whole Foods cold bar. Given how much it cost per pound (anyone else hold their breath when you weigh your meal at check-out?), it behooved me to check the ingredients. I learned to make it myself.
The ingredients didn't list measurements, and I was on my own to make the lip-smackingest cold sesame noodles this side of the James. Like many recipes I share with you, the measurements are instinctual - you have to eye it and season it to your own version of perfection.
But I would be remiss not to share, because if cold tossed pastas as new to you, this dish is a gateway drug.
Spicy cold sesame noodles
- Cooked, room-temperature angel hair noodles (rice noodles don't last as long)
- A small bunch of cilantro, chopped (stems included - they're great!)
- A few shakes of chili flakes (depending on your tolerance)
- The juice of one squeezed lime (at least)
- Many generous shakes of toasted sesame seeds
- At least 1-2 tablespoons of sesame oil
- At least one diced scallion
- Generous dashes of soy sauce (to taste)
- Salt (to taste)
- Optional: Grilled chicken
You just toss it all together. Just like that. Enjoy!