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Peanut butter adds the special touch to delicious, simple main dish

During the holiday season, I like to mix things up a bit and prepare meals that are not part of the traditional holiday fare. It is a nice change of pace and seems to make everyone enjoy and appreciate the season even more.

There are quite a few of my favorite recipes that use peanuts or peanut butter, but not many are the centerpiece of the meal. It is often the ingredient in cookies, bars and other sweets. However, I love the sweet and salty flavor in one of my tastiest noodle dishes yet.

My Sesame Peanut Noodles take only minutes to prepare but taste like something you have worked on for hours. The sauce is a combination of soy sauce, sesame oil, ginger and, of course, peanut butter. I like to use the Udon noodles you find in the Asian cooking section of the grocery store, however plain spaghetti noodles work great too. The noodles cook in the sauce and the flavors meld together wonderfully.

Belle’s Peanut Noodles

1/4 cup creamy peanut butter

3 tablespoons soy sauce

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 teaspoon ginger

1 tablespoon honey

1 tablespoon Sriracha sauce

1 teaspoon sesame oil

Zest and juice of 1/2 lime

½ pound Udon noodles (or spaghetti noodles) that have been cooked and drained

¼ cup chopped peanuts (for garnish)

¼ cup green onions, chopped (for garnish)

In a bowl, mix together the peanut butter, soy sauce, vinegar, oil, ginger, honey, Sriracha, sesame oil and lime. In a large pan, place the noodles and then cover with the sauce. Stir to coat and heat over low until noodles are hot. Serve with chopped peanuts and green onions sprinkled on top.

Brenda Stanley is the mother of five children, including two sets of twins, and a grandmother of three. She is a cookbook author, including the recently released "That's a Lot of Crock!" and novelist. Her website is at