Peppercorn Mélange Chicken And Udon Noodles In Lemongrass-Sake BrothPeppercorns, lemongrass, bok choy and saké combine in this flavorful, healthy, Asian-inspired soup.



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January 2009

Product Reviews / Main Nibbles / Soups & Stocks

Recipe: Peppercorn Mélange Chicken & Udon Noodles In Lemongrass-Saké Broth


The pairing of peppercorn mélange (black, green and pink peppercorns) and saké adds heat and floral notes to this Japanese-inspired meal-in-one udon noodle bowl with grilled chicken, shiitake mushrooms and vegetables. You don’t have to buy three different types of peppercorns; they come pre-mixed (the “mélange,” which is French for mixture.

Can you enjoy a glass of saké with the soup? Certainly! Learn more about saké.

Yields 6 servings.


  • 2 teaspoons peppercorn mélange,
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1-1/4 pounds boneless skinless chicken
    breast halves
  • 3 stalks lemongrass
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 4 heads baby bok choy, cut in half
  • 8 shiitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 5 cups chicken stock
  • 1/3 cup dry saké
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

Peppercorn Mélange and SakeSaké, Japan’s famed rice wine, finds a new partner in the quintessentially French unison of multicolored peppercorns.

  • 1/2 cup snow peas
  • 1/4 cup each red and yellow bell pepper strips
  • 2 packages (about 7 ounces each) precooked/instant udon noodles,
    cooked as directed on package (see Notes below)
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced (optional)


  1. Place 1 teaspoon of the peppercorns in large resealable plastic bag. Close tightly. Pound with a rolling pin, mallet or heavy skillet until coarsely cracked. Mix with sea salt. Press seasoning mixture onto both sides of chicken breasts.
  2. Grill chicken breasts over medium-high heat 6 to 8 minutes per side or until chicken is cooked through, turning frequently. Keep warm.
  3. Place remaining 1 teaspoon peppercorns and lemongrass stalks in the center of a piece of cheesecloth or a coffee filter. Tie tightly with a long piece of string.
  4. Heat sesame oil in large saucepan on medium heat. Add bok choy and shiitake mushrooms; cook and stir 2 minutes. Add chicken stock, saké, ginger and the spice bundle; bring to boil. Reduce heat to low; simmer 5 minutes.
  5. Add snow peas and bell peppers; simmer 5 minutes longer or until tender-crisp. Remove spice bundle.
  6. Slice chicken diagonally into thin slices. Divide noodles, broth mixture and chicken evenly among soup bowls. Sprinkle with green onions, if desired.


  • UdonUdon noodles are Japanese noodles made from wheat (some are wheat-rice blends). They can be found in the Asian aisle of some supermarkets and in Asian groceries. They are available in the precooked/instant form in aseptic packages or in dried form, as shown in the photo at right.

  • To use dried udon noodles, cook the noodles in a large pot of boiling water 8 to 10 minutes or until tender. Rinse under cold water; drain well. Prepare recipe as directed, adding drained noodles with the snow peas and red peppers.

  • Saké is available wherever fine wines are sold. It may also be found in the Asian aisle of some supermarkets or in Asian groceries. Learn more about the different types of saké in the Wine Section of THE NIBBLE.



Recipe © 2008 McCormick. All rights reserved. Other material

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