These sweet and spicy black pepper noodles are a great weeknight meal, filled with stir fried noodles, jammy caramelized shallots, and Asian inspired flavors. Top it all off with some crispy honey roasted edamame for an easy, vegetarian dinner in just about 30 minutes.
How to Roast Edamame
Roasted edamame is a quick, crispy topping that goes great on black pepper noodles. All you need is shelled edamame (make sure to thaw completely if using frozen) plus some raw hulled sesame seeds. Toss these together on a baking sheet with a bit of oil, honey, chili powder and salt then roast for about 15-20 minutes.
You’ll know they’re ready when the tops just begin to take on some color. You don’t want to overcook these or they’ll become dry. By roasting the edamame at a high temperature, we ensure that the outsides crisp up while the insides stay “moist.” (Sorry, couldn’t think of a better word.)
Also—one thing I love about this roasted edamame is how the sesame seeds kind of clump together and crystallize with the honey for crunchy little bites of salty and sweet. Once it cools off a bit, the edamame is delicious on noodles or just as a healthy snack.
How to Make Black Pepper Noodles
On to the noodles! These black pepper noodles were inspired by Yotam Ottolenghi’s famous black pepper tofu recipe, which starts with a base of shallots, ginger and lots of garlic. He then adds fried tofu and a few other ingredients, but I thought I’d keep it simple with noodles.
Very simple preparation, just sauté a few sliced shallots until very soft followed by a few garlic cloves and some grated ginger. You don’t want those last two aromatics in the pan for very long or they will burn and become bitter. Add in a good amount of soy sauce to deglaze the pan. Low sodium works best here because it allows you to add a lot without overpowering the dish. Finally, some sugar and black pepper for a little sweetness and kick.
For this recipe, I used udon noodles, but use whatever type you like. Follow the package instructions for cooking the noodles and make sure to transfer them directly into the sauce after they’re done. This prevents the noodles from sticking together. Once in the pan, everything will seem pretty dry, so just add a splash of water until the sauce reaches a smooth consistency. Last step, cut the heat and stir in a bit of rice wine vinegar. This helps bring out the flavors of the other ingredients.
And that’s it! Serve up the black pepper noodles noodles in bowls with a handful of roasted edamame and chopped scallions. Enjoy!
Tips for Making Black Pepper Noodles
- If the sauce seems too thin and doesn’t coat the noodles, you can thicken it using cornstarch. First create a slurry by mixing 1 tbsp cornstarch with 4 tbsp water. Pour that in with the soy sauce and simmer until thickened, adding more water as needed.
- The roasted edamame is best served fresh. Refrigeration causes it to lose its crunch and become soggy. If you plan on leftovers, maybe toss half the shelled edamame with the seasoning and wait to roast until ready to eat.
- To make this recipe vegan, replace the honey with maple syrup. For gluten free, use rice noodles or other gluten free type of noodle.
More Recipes to Try
- 20 Minute Gochujang Gnocchi
- Chickpea Paprikash
- Grilled Tofu Shawarma Bowls
- Honey Sesame Chickpea Lettuce Wraps