Well, a few thanksgiving pounds later and today I just really needed something wholesome. And healthy. And warm. And creamy. And savory! This soba is kind of like my scrumptious soba salad, but heartier and for colder weather. The buckwheat noodles are perfect for a post-thanksgiving meal, but the miso-tahini dressing and avocado give this dish the creamy umame that you still crave after 3 days of gluttony. This warm bowl of earthy heartiness makes me feel like I might be doing something good for my life, after all. It’s perfect on a crisp cold day when you just need a little something to warm (and fill!) you up. I used left over brussel sprouts and some cauliflower, but you could use any veggies you have. Broccoli and carrots would be great too!
I was starving and didn’t take any pictures of the process, so this is a streamlined post. Let’s get to it!
For the dressing: (All amounts are guesstimates, sorry. Trust your palate!)
- 3 tbsp Far East Sesame dressing (If you don’t have this, mix some sesame oil, sugar and rice vinegar and you’ll be good to go)
- 2tbsp Tahini (ground sesame seed butter)
- 2 tsp miso paste (I used yellow)
- 1 tsp ground ginger (or use fresh grated ginger for more of a kick!)
For the noodles:
- 4 oz. dry Buckwheat Soba noodles
- 1 clove minced garlic
- 1 cup sliced mushrooms
- 1 cup cauliflower florets
- 10 oz. sprouted tofu, extra firm (if you have regular tofu, make sure to drain it first!)
- 1 cup cooked brussels sprouts, quartered
- 4 green onions, green and white parts sliced
- 1 tbsp black sesame seeds
- dried seaweed sheets to taste
- 1 avocado, sliced
- Put a large pot of water on to boil. Cook Soba noodles according to directions, then drain and rinse with cold water.
- Meanwhile, chop veggies and tofu.
- Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in non-stick pan until hot. Toss in garlic and let cook for 1 minute. Add mushrooms, cauliflower, tofu and cook on high heat, stirring occasionally. Let the tofu and cauliflower get all brown and toasty!
- Add brussel sprouts and continue cooking for a few minutes.
- Add cooked soba noodles and sesame seeds and remove from heat. Stir to combine with veggies.
- Whisk miso, tahini and dressing in a bowl until smooth. Mix into noodles until everything is covered.
- Serve in a bowl, topped with green onions, avocado and shredded seaweed! I also used some Japanese chili powder. If you don’t have any, you can use red pepper flakes or Sriracha.
Remember when I said I was going to get my life back together today? Well, that didn’t exactly happen. I am most productive when I have an overwhelming amount of things on my plate, and I can frantically scramble to cross things off my to do list as fast as possible. When I have nothing, I do nothing. Which is what happened today, but really I blame the SWELTERING heat! It was 91 degrees in my house, so of course I just napped and watched tv with ice packs stuffed in my shirt. I also went to Costco and Home Depot and tried to by a portable air conditioner in desperation, only to learn that all air conditioners in southern california are sold out forever because everyone is smarter than me and bought theirs ahead of time. Mostly, I just wanted to wander around Costco and hang out in their produce department because they have air con and I don’t!
This heat gives me an insatiable craving for cold asian noodles, kind of like how any hint of a chill gives me an insatiable craving for hot asian noodles! I made up this soba salad today in hopes that it will cool me down and fill me up. It turned out perfect! Light, salty, crunchy and best of all, cold!
Originally I was going to make this with ramen noodles, but at the store I found some fresh soba noodles that didn’t need to be boiled! And anything involving less heat in my kitchen is a plus. If you can’t find soba noodles, just use top ramen cooked to the package directions, then drained. Also, use less chicken broth when combining the ingredients. This would also be good with buckwheat soba noodles, if you can find them. In a pinch, just use spaghetti!
Scrumptious Soba Salad
Time: 15 minutes
Servings: A lot! (I’m guessing 5-8, depending on how many noodles you can eat!)
- 17 oz. cooked fresh soba noodles (3 individual packages), about 3 cups cooked -or- 2 pkgs cooked ramen noodles
- 16 oz pkg extra firm sprouted tofu (non-sprouted is fine but you will have to press it), cut into 1″ cubes
- 1 tbsp. sesame oil
- 3/4 c. low sodium chicken broth
- 1 bunch green onions, chopped
- 1 12 oz. pkg broccoli slaw
- other chopped veggies of your choice ( I used baby summer squash from my garden but get creative here! edamame! carrots! sprouts!)
- 1 ripe avocado
For the sauce:
- 6 Tbsp low sodium soy sauce
- 1 Tbsp sesame oil
- 1 Tbsp rice vinegar
- 2 Tbsp sesame seeds (you can toast them if it’s not a million degrees in your kitchen)
- 1 tsp Agave or honey
- 2 Tbsp Far East Sesame Dressing (I used this because I ran out of sesame oil. If you don’t have it, use more vinegar and sesame oil and you should be fine
- Garlic Powder and Fresh ground pepper to taste.
- Heat 1 tbsp sesame oil and 3/4 cup chicken broth in large wok or frying pan. Add soba noodles and let cook, breaking noodles apart with spoon. If using ramen, cook noodles until slightly under done, and drain of all liquid before going to this step. Use less chicken broth as noodles will not absorb it.
- When almost all the liquid is absorbed, add broccoli slaw, white parts of chopped green onions, tofu, and any other veggies you want. (If using sprouts, I would wait to add those until the end so they don’t get mushy).
- Continue cooking over medium heat for a few minutes, until veggies are cooked but still crispy.
- Remove noodles from heat. Let them cool while you spill an ENTIRE bottle of OIL all over your kitchen floor, and comically try to clean it up while sliding all around. (oh wait, that’s just me).
- Whisk all ingredients for the dressing together. Make sure you taste it! It might need more a little something something.
- Mix dressing with noodles and transfer to a bowl to cool. Once they cool down a bit, stick them in the fridge until they are just right.
- Before serving, top with remaining green onion, more sesame seeds, and fresh avocado. If you are super crazy, top it with a poached, fried, or soft-boiled egg to let all the yokey goodness coat those noodles!
- Don’t forget lots of sriracha, and enjoy!