I’ve heard many mixed reviews about Shirataki noodles. Some absolutely hate them. Some can’t get enough. They’ve enjoyed a starring role in weight loss and diet plans, touting no carbs, no fat, and almost no calories. The problem is that they also have no flavor.
Texture is springy, almost rubbery so don’t expect them to replace the texture of perfect al dente Italian pasta.
Upon opening the package, your nostrils may be accosted by the odor of fish gone wrong. Don’t let this ruin your Shirataki experience. A good solid rinse will quickly get rid of the funky smell.
With these things in mind, how do you make these “miracle health noodles” taste as best as they can be? I’d love to share our favorite way of cooking up Shirataki noodles: spicy Asian stir-fry, how else?
The noodles we chose to work with are the JFC Brown Shiratake Yam Noodles. Pick them up for a couple of dollars per pack at your local Asian Supermarket. The color is brown because there is seaweed powder added to the noodles. After a good shower, they taste just the same as the white noodles.
The reason we chose the brown ones is because the noodles are slightly fatter, giving you more substantial bite. And they separate a bit better when frying, making them easier to work with. If you wish to make it even easier to fry, take some scissors and snip them a few times before adding to the wok.
The key to successful wok frying is working in small batches to prevent over-crowding. This sets the stage for even cooking and getting a great sear. Once you turn up the heat on your wok, things move really fast so it’s imperative that you have all your ingredients prepped and ready.
A note about avoiding dried out chicken breast. The secret to getting tender, juicy and tasty chicken breast is actually a 2-step marinade process, which I call the “15 x 2 Rule”. It takes a bit more effort to plan this extra step, but trust me, it’s entirely worth it to avoid the dried out, stringy, chewy chunks of meat that would otherwise happen. Before chopping, marinade the whole chicken breast in baking soda for 15 minutes. This is the tenderizing step. Rinse very well. After rinsing, slice the breast into small, bite sized pieces and add the chicken marinade ingredients and let that rest for 15 minutes. This step adds flavor. I promise your little morsels of chicken breast will be tender, juicy and full of tastiness.
Check out this little vid to see the wok stir-fry in action:
Shirataki Noodles Stir-Fry: (Serves 2)
- 2 packs Shirataki (Miracle) Noodles (7 oz each)
- 1 small chicken breast
- small piece fresh ginger, about the size of the end of your thumb
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 4 small shallots, sliced thin or 1 small onoin, diced fine
- 1-2 red chillies (adjust according to your heat tolerance), sliced thin
- half red/yellow/orange pepper, sliced
- 4 shiitake mushrooms, sliced
- 1 tbsp rice cooking wine or sake
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tsp dark soy sauce
- 1 tbsp peanut oil
- sliced green onions for garnish and sesame oil to finish
Chicken tenderizing: (15 minutes)
- 1 tsp baking soda
Chicken marinade: (15 minutes)
- 1 tsp soy sauce
- 1 tsp rice cooking wine or sake
- 1/2 tsp coconut sugar
- freshly ground pepper
- 1 tsp cornstarch
- 1 tsp peanut oil
1. Open Shirataki noodles and rinse well. Let drain and dry while you prep the rest of the ingredients (drier = better for stir-frying).
2. Coat chicken breast in baking soda. Let sit for 15 minutes. Rinse very well. Pat dry.
3. Slice chicken breast into thin, 1-inch strips. Marinade sliced chicken breast with chicken marinade atleast 15 minutes.
4. Prepare and slice all ingredients. Have them ready and within reach. You will be frying 2 batches: the first batch will be the meat. The second batch will be vegetables and noodles.
5. Heat wok over medium-high heat. Add 1/2 tbsp of oil. Heat oil until just the point of seeing it smoke.
6. Add half the shallots and ginger to the oil. Fry until it starts to brown. Add half the chillies and garlic. Fry another 30 seconds to 1 minute. Aromatics should be golden brown.
7. Add the chicken breast followed by the rice wine. Fry until almost fully cooked, just a couple minutes. You may still see some pink., that’s ok, it’ll fully cook when you add it back to the wok later. Transfer chicken to a clean bowl. Set aside.
8. Give your wok a quick wipe with a paper towel to clean it, or if bits are stuck to the bottom deglaze with water or rice wine.
9. Re-heat wok over medium-high heat. Add remaining 1/2 tbsp of oil.
10. Repeat step 6 with the remaining aromatics.
11. Add shiitake mushrooms and colored peppers. Fry for 1-2 minutes.
12. Add Shirataki noodles, followed by soy sauce and dark soy sauce. Fry until fragrant, another couple minutes.
13. Add chicken back to the wok and toss well. Make sure the chicken is fully cooked and not pink at all.
14. Garnish with green onions, and drizzle lightly with sesame oil.
15. Serve immediately.