A Bite Inspired by… Yoga:
In the mood for something light, healthy, and delicious? This Spa Chicken Glass Noodle Bowl will make you feel rejuvenated like you just finished an awesome yoga workout. The recipe features a sesame scented broth, lightly steamed veggies, flavorful chicken, and chewy glass noodles. Glass noodles are a tasty Chinese noodle made of mung beans, so they’re much lighter than traditional noodles. They’re also gluten-free. If you’ve never had them, now’s your chance to try something new! 🙂
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I’m a huge yoga girl. I just find it so relaxing! I have really tight muscles and some minor lower back problems. Yoga helps stretch all these areas out and keep my body limber. Similar to meditation, following the breath and focusing on the movement of the body naturally quiets the mind, which reduces stress levels.
I love going to a live class, when I have the time, but sometimes my yoga studio’s drop in schedule doesn’t match so well with mine. On days like this, I turn to my trusty library of yoga DVDs. If you’re just getting started with yoga and feeling a bit intimidated about going to a live class, there are two DVDs that I highly recommend: Jessica Smith: Gentle Yoga and Body by Bethenny. They’re both excellent and I do each one about once a week on average.
Whether it’s at home or at the studio, there’s something about a yoga practice that makes me want to eat light and healthy. One of my favorite meals to make after a yoga class is my Spa Chicken Glass Noodle Bowl. It’s a light sesame-scented noodle broth topped with flavorful slices of chicken breast and crisp veggies. It’s so delicious and satisfying—the perfect lunch or dinner!
And, no. You obviously don’t have to be a yogi to enjoy this delicious noodle soup! My best friend HATES yoga, but begs me to make her this recipe on a consistent basis. This dish is so light, healthy, and revitalizing that it’ll make you feel like you just went to a yoga class without ever having to leave your couch. It’s filling, but it doesn’t weigh you down. That’s what I love about glass noodles—they taste just as good as regular noodles, but without all the starchy, heavy carbs. They have such a delightful chewy texture that I find addicting. If you’ve never had them, glass noodles (also sometimes called cellophane noodles or bean thread noodles) are a thin, transparent Chinese noodle made from mung beans. They have a delightfully chewy texture and a neutral flavor that makes them perfect for soaking up the flavors of a good broth! They’re also more nutritious than regular wheat noodles and lower in calories. Plus, they’re gluten-free! You can find glass noodles at your local Asian grocery store or order them right here!
Also, don’t be deterred by the number of steps this recipe has. I promise you, it’s super easy to make! You basically do a quick stir-fry of the chicken with some delicious soy and sesame flavors. Then, you heat the chicken broth and add the noodles into the soup. They cook in just a few minutes and then you finish the broth with a bit of sesame oil. Finally, you top it with the cooked chicken and veggies, and it’s ready to eat! DELICIOUS! The broth will taste like it’s been cooking for hours, but it only takes a few minutes. The secret is that the sauce on the chicken infuses the broth when you put it on top, which gives it a rich flavor that is normally achieved by cooking the soup for hours.
Whether you’re a yoga person or not, I guarantee you will love this light, healthy, and flavorful meal! It’s perfect for winter, but light enough for summer too! Enjoy!
- For the chicken:
- ½ lb raw chicken breast, sliced
- 1 tablespoon sake
- 2 teaspoons gluten-free soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons of cooking oil
- 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
- Pinch of sugar
- For the soup:
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 4 ounces glass noodles
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil (see note)
- Soup toppings:
- 1 cup broccoli florets, lightly steamed
- 1 cup sliced carrot, lightly steamed
- ½ cup raw beansprouts, washed and dried
- Sliced scallions, for garnish
- Heat cooking oil in a medium non-stick pan over medium high heat. Add chicken in a single layer and allow to cook undisturbed for 2 minutes. Flip the chicken over and cook for 2 minutes more until lightly brown on each side.
- Add soy sauce to the pan. Cook for 1-2 minutes. Add sugar and stir a few times.
- Add sake to the pan and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly.
- Cook chicken for another 1-2 minutes, stirring occasionally, until fully cooked.
- Remove chicken from the heat. Add sesame seeds and stir to coat.
- Put chicken onto a plate and set aside.
- Add chicken broth to a medium saucepan. Heat on high until boiling.
- Add glass noodles to the broth. Reduce heat to low. Cook for 3-4 minutes until noodles are almost transparent. They should be chewy and no longer hard.
- Remove from heat and add sesame oil. Stir well.
- Divide noodles and soup between 2 large bowls. Top each bowl with chicken, broccoli, carrots, beanspouts, and sliced scallions. Enjoy immediately!
You can use either regular sesame oil in the broth or hot sesame oil, if you want a bit of heat.
Glass noodles can be found in Asian grocery stores and may also be called bean thread noodles or cellophane noodles.