PEANUT-SESAME
SOBA NOODLE SALAD

Cold noodle dishes make for amazing summer fare. They’re refreshing but also pack lots of big vibrant flavours which is critical when you’re serving something cold. Colder food needs more seasoning to stand out and this recipe delivers!

The star of the dish here is the dressing. Combining peanut butter and sesame oil provides a nutty richness that comes alive with the addition of ginger, soy and lime juice. I added a touch of honey for some sweetness but feel free to replace it with a more typical and plant-based alternative in palm sugar. 

By adding roasted red peppers to the dish we’ve added some smoky sweetness and some fresh cucumber for a refreshing crunch. You can substitute the veggie garnishes with whatever you’ve got available though. I opted for silken tofu as my protein choice because of its delicate texture and subtle flavour, really allowing the flavours of the vinaigrette to shine.

Peanut sesame cold soba salad


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Peanut sesame cold soba salad

PEANUT-SESAME SOBA NOODLE SALAD

Stephen La Rosa
Cold noodle dishes make for amazing summer fare. They’re refreshing but also pack lots of big vibrant flavours which is critical when you’re serving something cold. Colder food needs more seasoning to stand out and this recipe delivers! The star of the dish here is the dressing. Combining peanut butter and sesame oil provides a nutty richness that comes alive with the addition of ginger, soy and lime juice. I added a touch of honey for some sweetness but feel free to replace it with a more typical and plant-based alternative in palm sugar.
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Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Appetizer, Main Course, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine Asian
Servings 4 servings

INGREDIENTS
  

Peanut Sesame Sauce

  • 100 g Peanut butter
  • 30 g Sesame oil
  • 30 g Dark Soya sauce
  • 25 g Lime juice
  • 20 g Palm sugar or honey
  • 15 g Ginger, grated
  • 45 ml water or red pepper juice
  • 250 g Soba noodles
  • 3 Red peppers
  • 1 cucumber, sliced into strips
  • 350 g silken tofu, firm
  • 1 handful Coriander, fresh
  • 1 handful Mint, fresh
  • Peanuts, crushed and roasted
  • Togarashi
  • Black sesame seeds

METHOD
 

For the roast red peppers

  • Begin by preheating the broiler of your oven to its highest setting. Once hot, place the red peppers onto a baking tray on the top shelf of your oven, just underneath the broiler.
  • Cook for 5 minutes or until the surface is nicely charred and rotate the peppers. Continue this process for 15-20 minutes until the peppers are well charred and blistered.
  • Remove the peppers from the oven, place them into a mixing bowl and allow them to cool for 5 minutes. Scrape off the charred skin and remove the seeds from the peppers. Strain and reserve any of the liquid that the peppers leeched off into the mixing bowl. Slice the peppers into strips and set them aside.

For the Tofu

  • Wrap the tofu with 2 layers of absorbent kitchen paper and place it onto a tray. Place a small frying pan or similarly heavy item on top of the tofu and allow these to sit at room temperature for 20 minutes. This will firm up the tofu and remove excess moisture.
  • Once drained, cut into 1cm cubes and reserve.

For the Soba

  • Boil the soba noodles for 4-5 minutes or according to packet instructions. Immediately drain the noodles and submerge them into ice water for 2-3 minutes or until completely cool. Remove the noodles from the ice water into a strainer.

For the sauce

  • Combine all ingredients in a small mixing bowl using a whisk. Loosen up the mixture with a couple of tablespoons of your reserved red pepper liquid or water.
  • Add a few tablespoons of the sauce to the tofu and stir to coat. Allow these to sit and marinate while you prepare the remainder of your ingredients.

To finish

  • Once you’ve picked your herbs and sliced your cucumber into matchsticks you are ready to assemble.
    peanut sesame cold soba salad ingredients
  • Combine the noodles, red pepper and cucumber with the marinade and stir to combine and coat. Gently fold in your tofu and a few large handfuls of herbs.
  • Garnish the salad with more herbs, crushed peanuts, sesame seeds and either togarashi or sliced chillies for some heat.
  • Serve immediately or let the flavours mature in the fridge overnight. This dish is equally delicious served straight from the fridge or at room temperature. You may need to adjust the seasoning to your preference depending on the temperature you are serving it.

PRO TIPS

Roasted red peppers add smokiness and sweetness while cucumbers add some really nice texture and freshness. Feel free to replace the veggies as well as the tofu. Spring onions, cabbage, carrots and tomatoes would all make great additions to this dish. I like to combine the flavour of something cooked as well as the freshness from raw vegetables. 
Keyword Cucumber, Ginger, Noodles, Peanut, Red pepper, Sesame, Soba, Soya, Togarashi

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