Black sesame noodle salad
Top soba noodles with sesame paste and your protein of choice for a simple summer lunch.
Soba, made from buckwheat flour, is prettily packed in bundles about 8 to a package. Note that many sobas are also made with wheat flour so it isn’t a gluten-free food. Juwari, the finest – and usually most expensive – soba is made entirely of buckwheat, but please, please read the labels especially if you are allergic or intolerant to wheat!Skip to next paragraph
Born in Indonesia and raised in Singapore, Patricia Tanumihardja writes about food, travel, and lifestyle through a multicultural lens and has been published in numerous national and regional publications. Pat is also the creator of the “Asian Ingredients 101” iPhone and Android app, a glossary on-the-go that’s the perfect companion on a trip to the Asian market. Her first book, The Asian Grandmothers Cookbook: Home Cooking from Asian American Kitchens, will be available in paperback in September 2012.
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This is turning out to be my go-to recipe for a simple summer lunch. It’s done in 15 minutes, even less if you make the sesame paste ahead and refrigerate. Top the noodles with whatever you have on hand – poached chicken, pan-fried tofu, pickles, your options are only limited to what you have in your fridge!
Black Sesame Noodles
Adapted from 101cookbooks.com
Makes: 4 servings
Time: 15 minutes
1/2 cup toasted black sesame seeds
2-1/2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1-1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1-1/2 teaspoon mirin or dry sherry
1 tablespoon sugar
Pinch of chili pepper flakes or cayenne
12 ounces soba (3 bundles)
1 small cucumber, shredded
1 small carrot, shredded
1. Grind the sesame seeds with a mortar and pestle, or in a small food processor, until it resembles coarse black sand.
2. Stir in the rice vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, mirin, sugar, and chili flakes and mix until a smooth paste forms. Taste and adjust accordingly.
3. Cook the soba according to package directions, reserving 1/3 cup of the cooking water. Rinse the noodles with cold water and drain.
4. Thin the sesame paste with the cooking water and toss with the noodles. Garnish with cucumber and carrot and slurp up! This dish is tasty eaten at room temperature or chilled first.
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Related post on the Asian Grandmothers Cookbook: Lemongrass tea-poached chicken
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