Living in Consciousness ~ Indi(r)a’s Food and Garden Weblog

Rice Noodles & Tofu in Fiery Peanut Sauce

Rice Noodles and Extra Firm Tofu

I indulged in junk food during our road trip, but Vijay was strict about his diet. His junk food was fruits, mainly lot of oranges and mandarins. My mood was going up and down along with the road curves we were taking, but Vijay was his usual chirpy, pleasant self the whole trip. I guess all that Vitamin C (known to cause sunny disposition in people) does effect one’s mood and also taking them was his way of dealing with unpredictable moods of his companion.:)

One of the healthy meals during our travel time was at Madison. We went to Noodles and Company (Asian fast food joint) next to our hotel for dinner. We didn’t have this chain in our part of Ohio and PA, and it’s a refreshing fast food experience we had in a while. Most of their menu was filled with decent real food like items and I went with ‘Indonesian fiery peanut saute’. As written in restaurant menu, this dish was prepared by sauteing rice noodles with fiery peanut sauce, broccoli, carrot and Napa cabbage and garnished with bean sprouts, crushed peanuts and lime wedges. You could also order tofu or chicken strips with it. Of course I went with tofu. I liked the whole combination so much, and had decided to recreate this dish at home once I reached Seattle.

If you have all the ingredients at hand, preparation is quick and easy, and it can be a filling meal.

Ingredients for Noodle Preparation

(for two hungry people)

Prepare Fiery Peanut sauce:

Half cup of roasted peanuts
8 dried red chillies – Indian variety
½ tsp of each – salt and jaggery(/sugar) or to taste
Take them all in blender. Add a cup of water and blend to smooth paste. This is our ‘fiery’ sauce.

Vegetables and Tofu:

Broccoli: wash and cut or separate small florets (10 to 12)
Carrot: cut to thin, vertical strips of 2 inches length (15 to 20)
Spring onions (1 bunch) – finely chop
Tofu: Extra firm variety, cut to 1-inch cubes (10 to 12 cubes)
Bean sprouts: wash and half them (about a cup)
To garnish: prepare cilantro and lime wedges
You also need soy sauce and salt to taste.


In a big skillet, add a tablespoon of peanut oil. Add and fry tofu cubes to pale gold color. Remove to a plate and keep them aside.

To the same skillet, add the vegetables and stir-fry them to the tenderness you desire. Then add the fiery-fragrant peanut sauce, a pinch of salt and one teaspoon of soy sauce. And also tofu cubes and bean sprouts. Mix. Cook for about 5 minutes, covered. If the sauce is too tight, add little bit of water and adjust the seasoning (salt and jaggery) also.

Meanwhile cook rice noodles (purchased at Trader Joe’s grocery shop), 2 bundles, one for each person, according to packet instructions. Take care not to overcook. They would stick to each other and become a soggy mess if overcooked. Drain and immediately add the rice noodles to skillet.

Toss the rice noddles with vegetables and peanut sauce. Sprinkle some more bean sprouts, cilantro and squeeze some limejuice. Serve hot.

Rice Noodles and Tofu in Fiery Peanut Sauce ~ Our Simple Meal Today

This sauce is really ‘fiery’. For medium fiery sauce – reduce the number of chillies to 6, for mild sauce to 4 or even less.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Rice Noodles,Soy (Tofu, Yuba) (Thursday October 12, 2006 at 3:55 pm- permalink)
Comments (44)

The New Home of Mahanandi:

44 comments for Rice Noodles & Tofu in Fiery Peanut Sauce »

  1. Hi Indira,

    This dish looks so yummy ! I am going to make it this weekend for my family.
    I hope you have settled down in the new place


    Comment by Sangeeta — October 12, 2006 @ 4:25 pm

  2. Indira,
    Such a quick and easy meal that is actually good for you! I usually make this sort of thing with mushroom sauce and singapore noodles (shall blog it sometime) but definately trying this one out. I really need to boost my iron and protein intake!

    Comment by Praveena — October 12, 2006 @ 4:26 pm

  3. Indira,

    Can I substitute the jaggery with sugar or Splenda ?


    Comment by Sangeeta — October 12, 2006 @ 4:28 pm

  4. Hi Sangeeta: If you try, let me know how you like it. Thanks.
    Yes, sugar works fine too.

    Praveena: Mushroom sauce and singapore noodles, now you made me curious.:)

    Comment by Indira — October 12, 2006 @ 5:10 pm

  5. Wow Indira! You’re a genius! The dish looks exactly like how they make it. We have N&C here in Omaha and its my fav joint for a quick bite. I love their Pesto Cavatappi. Its my favorite. I like this dish too, but never tried it at home. Now I can 🙂

    Comment by Latha — October 12, 2006 @ 5:16 pm

  6. This sounds delicious and just something I would order at an Asian noodle bar, Indira. Thanks for posting the recipe/method – will try this out soon!

    Comment by payal — October 12, 2006 @ 5:37 pm

  7. hi indira –

    i used to be a regular at this joint when we were in Denver. In fact, my daughter loved their noodle soup with tofu and veggies – only negative was they couldn’t made it with a vegetable broth, instead they use their chicken broth which is the case with any Chinese/Thai restaurant I guess unless they are vegan/organic places.
    I liked their Penne Pasta dish and the noodles you made. It’s amazing to see you have been able to recreate the exact same dish. Very impressed with your fiery peanut sauce – this is what I call the “Indira” touch! 🙂 Have you considered packaging your brand of asian peanut sauces, indian peanut chutneys, sauces for bagara baingan, powders etc? :-)If you may allow me, can I confer upon you a title “The Peanut Queen”? 🙂

    anyways – will try this recipe.

    quick questions:
    1) What brand of peanut oil do you buy and where? Is there any specific thing that I need to look for – coldpressed etc.?
    2)Rice noodles – what brand and from where?
    3) What is napa cabbage?

    thanks so much Indira!


    Comment by desimom — October 12, 2006 @ 7:26 pm

  8. Looks absolutely tempting

    Comment by Amisha — October 12, 2006 @ 7:58 pm

  9. Welcome back Indira! I’m happy you guys re settled and all…I only checked your site today and was pleasantly surprised you’ve been blogging for a while!
    Love those fiery noodles….just my kinda dish.
    And btw, all the best to your husband with his masters. Your apartment must feel like a student apartment now….I know mine did as soon as I started my masters!

    Comment by Nabeela — October 12, 2006 @ 8:11 pm

  10. Indira, I haven’t made noodles with peanut or any sauce.. I usually prepare the common stir fried noodles. This recipe is new to me and it looks attractive.thanks for the recipe.
    Thanks for visiting my blog and for leaving ur kind comment.It was really encouraging and I felt happy. thanks

    Comment by prema — October 12, 2006 @ 8:13 pm

  11. Nice recipe. I love the food at Chinese eat-outs, but i hate the fact that it is loaded with MSG. For that matter, most processed and fast foods are. It’s unbelievable that whoever-inspects-and-approves-food lets every company add a scoop of MSG and get away with it, though it has been proven to cause brain damage in the long run and even parents of babies less than two years old are advised not to feed the babies, food with MSG content. And then they all say- ‘It hasn’t been scientifically proven y-e-t that MSG is bad for you’.
    Sorry about to rant. I’ll surely make this dish sometime.

    Comment by Radha — October 12, 2006 @ 8:35 pm

  12. Thank you for this recipe, Indira. I do not know if you would recollect, but I am a big togu fan and asked you for recipes with tofu. This recipe adds a new item to my tofu menu.

    Comment by Raghuveer — October 12, 2006 @ 9:43 pm

  13. Hi Indira,
    I am regular visitor of your site ,thought I m posting comment to u for the first time. Yours is a very informative site and I just enjoy surfing through it. I have even tried some of the recipes u put here. And I am also very innovative and exprimental with my normal recipes for change in taste. But I always take care that it should be healthy for our body too. May be that is the reason I love to try your recipes more, as they r almost light and healthy for us. Now recently when i read abput you shifting to new place and the whole journey detials, I feel like I know since a long 🙂 .

    Comment by Pooja — October 13, 2006 @ 1:17 am

  14. Hi Indira,
    I was longing to see you again in your blog but missed the opportunity to welcome you after the break as I was preoccupied with my sis-in-law’s engagement back home. I am happy that your move went on well and you got settled in Seattle. Even after 7 years of marriage and cooking experience, I am diffident of making pachhadis. But your gongura chutney gave a boost to my confidence and there we are – andhra maharajas in your words! Thanks a lot!

    Comment by Anuradha — October 13, 2006 @ 3:32 am

  15. I have always wanted to cook with rice noodles, but wasnt sure what kind to buy. What type of noodles do you usually buy and how much do you cook for each person? Thanks a lot for sharing the recipe.

    Comment by Pavani — October 13, 2006 @ 5:19 am

  16. Nice recipe Indira. In it goes into my to-do list. I’d probably toss in a pod of garlic in the sauce. Thanks for recreating this dish.

    Comment by Hema — October 13, 2006 @ 6:51 am

  17. My first visit to N&C was about a month ago, also in Madison. I too ordered the Indonesian stir fry. However after taking a couple of bites, I realized that there was some unfamiliar smell, quite possibly a fish sauce in the dish. I could not eat my dish after that. My son had ordered the cavatappi and I ended up sharing that with him. Their portions are quite generous 🙂

    No such worries with your homemade version right? looks delicious!


    Comment by Saffron Hut — October 13, 2006 @ 7:19 am

  18. nice pics and nice recipe indira..thanks for sharing

    Comment by meena kandlakuti — October 13, 2006 @ 10:04 am

  19. A very tempting picture. Goes into my must-do list.Thnx

    Comment by jayshree — October 13, 2006 @ 10:40 am

  20. Looks yummy – much like pad thai !!

    Comment by Revathi — October 13, 2006 @ 11:58 am

  21. Latha: Genius, na…They spelled out the recipe in their menu.
    They do have some good decent choices, I wish we had this chain when we were in Boardman.:)

    Hi Payal: You are welcome.:)

    Hi Prabha:
    Thanks for your well wishes and for all your comments. Sometimes it becomes too much and overwhelming here, I need to walk away from replying.:)
    I do cook a lot of peanut based recipes, don’t I? I like almost all things with peanut. and peanut oil is my cause.:)
    I buy peanut oil from Costco or walmart. There aren’t that many choices in range or price here in US. Before the heavily promoted canola and corn oils, peanut oil is becoming a rare find in US in recent years.
    Rice noodles – I purchased them from Trader Joe’s.
    Napa cabbage – link
    Hope your mom and newborn baby are adjusting to life in this new place.:)

    Hi Nabeela: Thanks for your warm wishes, Appreciate it. Yep, slowly getting back to the routine.
    After several trips to Ikea, my studio apartment is now looking clean and livable.:)

    Prema: You are welcome.:)
    IF you try, let me know how you like it. Thanks.

    Radha: No problem, please rant away. All kinds of ‘decent’ rants are quite welcome here.:)

    Raghuveer: I remember your request. Hope you like it.

    Hi Pooja: It’s very nice of you to say such nice words about me and Mahanandi. I am glad to hear that you find the content of this site helpful. Thanks for the feedback.

    Anuradha: Hope the engagement party at home went well. Happy to see you here and thanks for your wishes.
    Gongura chutney is delicious, isn’t it? I am glad to hear that you like it too.

    Hi Pavani: I bought these noodles from Trader Joe’s grocery shop. I think you can also get them from Chinese/Asian grocery shops. Quantiy: It’s a 13 OZ packet and had 3 individual bundles and I used two for this recipe.

    SH:What a coincidence:).
    Mine was heavily flavored with soysauce and it did dominate all other flavors including the ‘fiery’ sauce. But in my hungry state, everything that was served on plate looked wonderful to me.:)

    Hi Hema, Meena, Jayshree: You are welcome and thanks.

    Revathi: Yep, almost like pad-thai.

    Comment by Indira — October 13, 2006 @ 12:14 pm

  22. Indira,
    N and C is N’s favorite joint. And believe it or not … the indonesian peanut saute’ is his favorite. I like the pesto cavatappi and the penne.

    Great replication there !! Awesome !

    Comment by Mythili — October 13, 2006 @ 1:17 pm

  23. Indira, nice to see you back. I have never seen this N&C before. Want to try once there. But what about the chicken broth used in noodles? did you inquire about that?
    Loved your version :). Will try it sometime…. did u like Seattle? I will be moving from Kansas soon and Seattle was on my list(apart from CA and NJ).

    Comment by shilpa — October 13, 2006 @ 3:22 pm

  24. I enjoy peanut sauce. it’s a good idea to make it yourself with chillies. It should be crunchier than using peanut butter, as I usually do.

    Comment by Virginie — October 14, 2006 @ 6:04 am

  25. Mythili: Thanks.

    Shilpa: didn’t enquire about any of that. Read the menu, found it decent enough, ordered and enjoyed my meal.
    About Seattle: Except for the shopping and grocery trips, we haven’t gone out much. Also we live near downtown. But from what I have seen so far, Seattle is not bad at all.

    Virginie: I agree, homemade peanut sauce is the best and we can control what goes into it and the consistency.

    Comment by Indira — October 14, 2006 @ 9:31 am

  26. Hi Indira,

    The noodles look yummy!I am going to try this especially because the noodles look easy to cook. I always remove them from the stove earlier and have to cook it all over again. I am commenting for the first time at your blog though I have visited it and also cooked and eaten many of your great recipes with relish. Please do visit my blog at

    Comment by Nalini — October 14, 2006 @ 1:31 pm

  27. Indira, life is good again now that you’re back in action.
    This looks so delicious. It reminds me of pad thai without any suspect ingredients. Indira, if you make a vegetarian version of pad thai, please do post it sometime. Thanks.

    Comment by Terri — October 14, 2006 @ 6:23 pm

  28. I made this dish last night and it was very good. I used 6 red chilies but the sauce was not very fiery. I like your recipes and appreciate you posting photos also but it would have helped me if you had given amounts of the different ingredients.

    Comment by Nithya — October 16, 2006 @ 7:03 am

  29. Hi Indira –

    Thank you for your reply. Noted all the stuff you mentioned.Where we live, there’s no TJ’s. We used to live in LA earlier, and oh my – we were avid TJ customers. In fact the store that I went to had Mario Batali for a sauce promotional event, and I got his autograph and talked to him a little – memorable experience. In fact it was my daughter’s first grocery outing – she was 2 months then! We miss TJ’s so much. They have amazing products, and it’s an awesome place to shop. The day we left LA back in Mar 2004, I paid a quick visit to TJ’s to pack some snakcy stuff for the plane, the store staff gave me flowers and my little one balloons for a cute little farewell. LOVE the store!! LA has its first TJ outlet in West LA, and we have gone there several times – very tiny store. I have to recommend to you a brand of Banana chips – like the kind you get in India – kerala style – this one is made in peru – bright yellow ones and crisp up to the p…Inca brand, if I remember right – 99 cents per pack, and a nice snack to indulge in! My husband liked their Mochi ice cream, Tofutti sandwich ice cream, – there’s always something new that you will find at TJ’s, and that too not very expensive. Happy food shopping! Ujimayya is interesting too – curious to see what products you buy from there. – loved your Ber picture – Yummo!!! felt like grabbing it out of the monitor!

    ok- bye!


    Comment by Desimom — October 16, 2006 @ 7:48 am

  30. Hi Indira –

    I heart Noodles and Company! I am definitely gonna try this recipe. It looks yummy!

    Comment by Luv2Cook — October 18, 2006 @ 7:53 am

  31. hi indria

    i love ur web sit i tried lots of stuff…. i was also looking for chicken recpice.


    Comment by savitha — October 31, 2006 @ 5:24 pm

  32. Hi Indira,
    The noodles look mouth watering. I want to make this as my hubby likes tofu very much but am not able to get the rice noodle at QFC. Is there any other substitute? I would be very happy if you could let me know. Thanks

    Comment by Ramya — January 12, 2007 @ 12:11 pm

  33. Hi Indira,
    Your website is really cool. I love all your recipes. Can you tell me the brand of soy sauce that you use ? Is it the chinese or japanese version ?


    Indira replies:
    Hi Charu, thank you for your nice words about Mahanandi.
    I use Japanese version. This is the brand I prefer.
    Hope this helps.

    Comment by Charu — April 19, 2007 @ 7:07 pm

  34. Thanks a lot Indira !!

    Comment by Charu — April 19, 2007 @ 7:45 pm

  35. Indira,

    I just tried this dish and its very tasty! Thanks for the recipe. I tried it with 4 chillies and yet it was fiery and spicy and i used the thing rice noodles, carrots, cababge, onions, bell pepper and a mushroom. Again i didnt have tofu so used paneer! Was worth it! Will try making again with the ingredients mentioned.

    Indira replies:
    Glad to hear that you tried and liked this recipe, Anu. YOur version sounds delicious.

    Comment by Anu — June 8, 2007 @ 11:04 am

  36. Noodles & Co is one of our favorites here – the Indonesian Peanut Saute is my favorite – thanks for recreating this – will defintely give it a try.

    Comment by Shobana — June 20, 2007 @ 10:03 am

  37. what kind of tofu do u use
    extra firm?

    Comment by sally — February 5, 2008 @ 9:11 am

  38. I just made this today, I’m soooo happy that it turned out to be same as the one we have at a Thai restaurant. Thanks a bunch for posting this, Indira!
    I also added some garlic powder and basil leaves while cooking, and replaced brocolli by bell peppers.

    Comment by Manjusha — April 8, 2009 @ 4:16 pm

  39. Hi,
    This is just wonderful. I love Thai Cuisine and tried in couple of restaurants at Chicago. But always had the feeling that the previous eater would have definetly been a non-veggie. I am a pure vegan and don’t even eat eggs. This one is really awesome. I am going to try it at home. Hope it tastes the same as in a Thai restauarant. Thanks.

    Comment by Roopashree — August 11, 2009 @ 1:16 pm

  40. How many oz is “a bundle”. I got a 16oz box of rice noodles, not trader joes, and it’s all just in a bag within the box, not in any bundles.

    Comment by Kat — August 13, 2009 @ 12:48 pm

  41. Hi Indira garu
    This one is my favorite at N&C. I just tried it today nd it came out superbly well!!!Yummy!!Me nd my husband had a real gud meal!!
    Thanks a lot…. ur blog is too gud and I love the way u present evrything…. thanks once again… keep posting

    Comment by swetha — May 3, 2010 @ 7:58 pm

  42. Wow! Awesome flavors and just the right amount of heat. I found this recipe spurr of the moment so I had to improvise on the veggies. I used one boneless chicken breast, about 1/3 cup of chopped red pepper. a small head of bok choy, the scallions and carrots and a handful of snow peas. It came together in no time and my husband, who is a chef, said this is a definite keeper and kept complimenting me all through the meal. Gotta love that eh? The lime juice and cilantro gave this dish the perfect finishing touch. Can’t wait to make this one for friends!

    Comment by Ashrei — November 28, 2012 @ 8:22 pm

  43. Wow! Awesome flavors and just the right amount of heat. I found this recipe spurr of the moment so I had to improvise on the veggies.

    Comment by website designer in Jaipur — March 9, 2018 @ 3:25 pm

  44. please don’t ever take this off your website! I’ve been making this dish for 10 years since you first posted it and still a family favorite.

    Comment by Rikki — July 22, 2018 @ 9:10 pm

Your Comment


(required but not published)

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

It sounds like SK2 has recently been updated on this blog. But not fully configured. You MUST visit Spam Karma's admin page at least once before letting it filter your comments (chaos may ensue otherwise).