February 8, 2013

Friday Foodie: Soba Noodles

One thing that can be heard when you are eating vegetarian is keeping your meals nutritionally balanced.  This isn’t so vital when you eat vegetarian only part of the time (as we do) in order to save on calories or on your pocketbook.  But even so,  it defeats the purpose if you wind up hungry and not feeling like you’ve had a “real” meal.  That’s why one of our go-to ingredients on vegetarian night is soba noodles.  These Japanese-style buckwheat noodles are not only high in protein and iron, but they are a good source of fiber and amino acids.  The noodles are a good source of thiamine.  Historically, this led to them being used to balance the nutritionally poor diet in parts of Asia (such as Tokyo) that resulted from more people turning to polished white rice.  Let it bring a little balance to your diet too.  Plus, they are delicious.
While you can adorn soba noodles with any sauce, here are two Asian-inspired preparations. 
Soba Noodles in Ginger Sauce
2 tbsp. grated ginger
3 tbsp. sesame oil
¼ tsp. red chili flakes
2 tbsp. soy sauce
2 tbsp. rice vinegar
1 ½ tbsp. raw honey
1 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
2 tsp. lime juice
2 bundles (7 oz.) Soba noodles
1 ½ tbsp. sesame seeds
¼ c. scallions, minced (green part only)
½ c. cucumber, julienned
In a medium bowl, combine ginger, sesame oil, chili flakes, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, honey, black pepper and lime juice.  Set aside.

Cook soba noodles according to package directions.  Drain thoroughly.  Meanwhile, toast the sesame seeds in a dry skillet until they become fragrant and start to brown.  Remove from heat.

Place the noodles in a large bowl.  Pour the ginger mixture over the noodles.  Add the scallions and julienned broccoli stems and toss to combine.  Garnish with the toasted sesame seeds.  Serve hot, or refrigerate for several hours.

Soba Noodle Soup
4 c. vegetable stock (preferably home-made)
1 (1”) piece ginger, pressed
2 cloves garlic, pressed
1 tsp. natural peanut butter
1/8 tsp. red chili flakes
1 tsp. salt
2 bundles (7 oz.) soba noodles
1 tsp. sesame oil
¼ c. scallions, minced, green parts only
1 carrot, grated
¼ c. cilantro leaves, minced
½ c. bean sprouts
1 lime, cut into wedges

In a large saucepan, combine  vegetable stock, ginger and garlic over high heat. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for ten minutes.  Add the peanut butter, red chili flakes and salt.

 Meanwhile, cook soba noodles according to package instructions, decreasing cooking time by one minute. Drain the noodles and toss them with the sesame oil, scallions and carrots.  Divide this mixture evenly among soup bowls.  Ladle the hot broth over the noodle mixture.  Garnish with the cilantro leaves, bean sprouts and a squeeze of lime.

This post was written by Amber at Dandylyon’s Garden.  Visit her Etsy shop for fragrant herb sachets, garden and kitchen aprons, crocheted and quilted accessories and home décor, and vintage brooches, or her blog for food culture and history, recipes, sewing tutorials and more.  Amber teaches vegetarian cooking classes at UTA.


Buffy said...

OOOH YUMMY! My family thinks I've been possessed by the ghost of Betty Crocker. Don't tell them it's just the Friday Foodie posts on Etsy Fort Worth!

Amelia said...

Oh, I am definitely trying this! I've perfected my seared Ahi Tuna dish so it's time to move on to a new recipe and I absolutely love Japanese food!