March 22, 2018

Tofu Shirataki Noodles With Spicy Thai Basil Pesto

Recipe: Ilene Rosen with Donna Gelb

Try this recipe for Tofu Shirataki Noodles With Spicy Thai Basil Pesto from the cookbook Saladish.

The classic Italian pasta-and-pesto template is made new with Thai basil and peanuts, shirataki noodles, and funky dried shrimp. You’ll find the noodles next to tofu products in the refrigerator case in Asian markets and some supermarkets; don’t be intimidated — the slippery tofu noodles are fun and quick to prepare.


  • 1⁄2 cup dried shrimp
  • 1 1⁄2 pounds wide shirataki noodles
  • Kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup unsalted peanuts
  • 1⁄2 cup fresh Thai basil leaves, or half regular basil and half mint leaves

Spicy Thai Basil Pesto

  • 2 cups fresh Thai basil leaves, or substitute half regular basil and half mint leaves
  • 1/4 cup unsalted peanuts
  • 1 fresh Thai bird or other hot chile, seeded and minced, or to taste
  • 1/2 cup flavorless
  • Vegetable oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • A few drops of fish sauce (optional)


Yield: Serves 6

  1. Make the pesto: Put the basil leaves in the bowl of a food processor or in a blender and pulse to chop, scraping down the sides as necessary. Add the peanuts and the hot chile and process to combine, scraping down the sides. With the motor running, drizzle in the oil, processing until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper and, if desired, the fish sauce. Set aside.
  2. Toast the dried shrimp in a small dry skillet over medium heat for about a minute, until fragrant. Transfer to a plate.
  3. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Put the noodles in a colander and rinse well under cold running water. Add to the boiling water and cook for 2 minutes, or until heated through. Drain and transfer to a large bowl.
  4. Toss the noodles with the pesto. Add salt to taste and toss again. Add the shrimp and peanuts and toss again lightly. Transfer to a serving bowl, shower the basil leaves over the top, and serve.

Excerpted from Saladish by Ilene Rosen (Artisan Books). Copyright © 2018. Photographs by Joseph De Leo. Used with permission from the publisher.

Tags: Noodles Recipe