Two questions, many answers

Posted 5/15/20

A couple of weeks ago, I had an idea.

I contacted some chefs, some famous, some not, but each of them is a highly admired role model chef to me.

I asked each of them the same two questions. …

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Two questions, many answers

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A couple of weeks ago, I had an idea.

I contacted some chefs, some famous, some not, but each of them is a highly admired role model chef to me.

I asked each of them the same two questions. They were questions designed to help all of us during our virus-imposed sequestration.

Joy Bauer, MS, RDN, CDN is one of the world’s leading authorities on health and weight loss. She’s the nutrition and health expert for NBC’s Today Show. She’s also a bestselling author of 13 books. Her newest book is Joy Bauer’s Superfood!.

Question #1: When it’s going to be a while before you make a grocery run, what’s your favorite pantry meal?

Answer: Cold Sesame Noodles with 4-ingredient peanut sauce!

These cold sesame noodles are a family favorite in my house. They’re ridiculously easy to make and the peanut butter sauce requires only four simple ingredients (one of them is water!). Go ahead and enjoy it with any pasta of choice—whole grain, chickpea, lentil, soba etc. If you have a peanut or nut allergy, feel free to use any nut or seed butter. And if you don’t have broth on hand, you can swap in 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar or mirin. Bonus: if you happen to have ’em in your pantry, sliced scallions and toasted sesame seeds are two extra tasty garnishes. Dig in!

PREP TIME: 5 minutes

TOTAL TIME: 15 minutes

This recipe makes 11/4 cup sauce


• Box of whole-grain pasta, cooked and drained

• 1/2 cup peanut butter (or any nut or seed butter)*

• 1/4 cup warm water

• 1/4 chicken or vegetable broth

• 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce

• Optional extras: Squirt of Sriracha or any favorite hot sauce, sliced scallions and toasted sesame seeds for garnish

*Warm peanut butter in microwave for 10-15 seconds to soften up for easier mixing


In a medium bowl, mix together peanut butter, water, broth, and soy sauce until everything is well combined and smooth. Add an optional squirt of Sriracha or hot sauce if you like some heat.

Toss some of the sauce with your cooked pasta (I recommend 2 tablespoons for every 1 cup cooked noodles) and enjoy warm or cold. Garnish with optional sliced scallions and toasted sesame seeds and enjoy!

NOTE: You’ll likely have leftover sauce, which will last for up to a week in the fridge; simply give it a good stir and warm in microwave to soften and thin it out. If it’s too thick, simply add extra broth, water or rice vinegar when reheating.


Nutrition based on one cup pasta + 2 tablespoons sauce.

Amount per serving

Calories: 215 Protein: 9 g Total Fat: 5 g Unsaturated Fat: 5 g Saturated Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Total Carbohydrate: 36 g Dietary Fiber: 5 g Total Sugar: 1 g Natural Sugar: 1 g Added Sugar: 0 g Sodium: 100 mg

Question #2: What’s your best food-related activity suggestion for staving off familial boredom and the resulting mayhem?

Answer: Experimenting in the kitchen…of course! My family and I love to cook and bake. And now, since we’re all stuck in quarantine and everyone is home together, we’re spending a ton of time in the kitchen, creating and concocting, whipping up delicious (good-for-you) goodies!

A few of the treats Bauer mentioned are, PB Coconut Cookie Dough Dip, Slow Cooker Chocolate Banana Bread, and Banana Cream Pies.

All of the recipes mentioned here, and many more can be found on her website:

Next week our chef is Joanne Weir, author of multiple cookbooks and host of six different PBS cooking series.

Thanks for your time.

Contact me at


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