Monday, 2 January 2012

Summertime Soba Noodle Salad

After a month's absence, I am back. I had a lovely month of Dolly Parton, Uni reunions, Christmas parties and a trip to Tasmania. It was so busy - I hardly had time to cook (much less cook anything interesting!) so I didn't have much to post. Hopefully now that things are a bit quieter (and I am up one awesome food processor!) I can get back into it. In my last post I mentioned an upcoming "Picnic Fortnight" - this will be delayed until I know I have enough time to do it properly.

Today it is 40' Celsius outside (that's around 104' fahrenheit), and though I am sitting in my nice cool house watching movies, it is still lovely to eat a nice cold meal rather than something hot. Here is one of my favourite summertime recipes, also great for picnics!

Ingredients for the "salad":

1 pkg soba noodles (3 bundles)
1/2 block tofu (the fresh kind from Asian grocers), drained, pressed, then cubed
1 small red capsicum, thinly sliced
4 stalks green onion, thinly sliced
2 tbsp peanuts
1 tbsp sesame seeds
1 tsp black sesame seeds
a few grinds of black pepper
2 tbsp coriander leaves, chopped

Ingredients for the "dressing":

2 tbsp sesame oil
1 tbsp peanut oil
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp dark soy sauce
splash of light soy sauce
juice of 1/2 lime
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 green chili pepper, thinly sliced

Cook the soba noodles as per the directions on the package. Once cooked, rinse them with cold water and set aside to fully drain. In the meantime, chop your veggies and compile your sauce. For the sauce, just combine all the wet ingredients by whisking them together. Add the garlic and chili, stirring to combine.

Put the drained and cooled soba noodles in a large mixing bowl. Drizzle with a bit of sesame oil and toss with a fork, until the noodles are lightly coated in oil. Throw in the red pepper and green onion and toss again. Now pour in your dressing, little by little, until it coats the noodles. Cover the mixing bowl and refrigerate for a few hours. You can eat it sooner, but it tastes best when it has had a chance to cool and the flavours have had a chance to combine. 

Once it has been in the fridge for a bit, I would recommend trying some and adding extra soy/vinegar/lime/etc. to taste. Before serving, toast your peanuts and sesame seeds in a small frypan - garnish with this, black pepper and coriander.


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