Saturday, August 22, 2009

Lusciously Legumelicious Soba Noodles

I love soba noodles.

Apparently, they're extremely difficult to make from scratch. The buckwheat flour is tricky to work with, and it takes years of practice and training to make excellent soba noodles. I like to think that eating lots and lots of soba noodles is my way of showing my appreciation for all the hard work these soba masters put into their craft.

After stumbling across them at World Market (finally), I was excited to make a dish bursting with Asian flavors and seasonal goodness. I happened to make the noodles on a day when my fridge was less-then-ideally stocked, and I ended up resorting to padding my basic peanut sauce recipe with some jarred Satay sauce form Trader Joe's that I bought months ago - I'm not dead, so I guess it was fine. The recipe I've provided below, however, is the real deal.

Soba noodles are tastier than plain old spaghetti (although this recipe would be fine with whole wheat pasta subbed in), and there's something about their texture that makes them the perfect complement to hearty, leafy greens and stubbornly crisp summer beans. The peanut sauce is so refreshing, and only requires a few ingredients. The noodles simply swathed in the sauce would make an excellent lunch, served cold with a fresh green salad on the side.


9 oz. dry soba noodles
1 bunch red kale (or other variety kale or leafy green)
1/2 c. shelled, ready-to-eat edamame
3/4 lb. (approx.) mixed green and yellow wax beans
1/2 large white onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 T. olive oil
a few slices extra-firm tofu (optional), squeezed dry and lightly pan-fried


2 T. natural (no sugar added) peanut butter
a couple good dashes rice wine vinegar
2 T. honey
squirt of Sriracha (to taste)
2 T. soy sauce
juice of 1/2 a lemon


Boil the soba noodles in salted boiling water until al dente. About 3 minutes before the noodles are done, add the kale to the water. Drain the kale and noodles.


Make the peanut sauce by whisking all the ingredients under "sauce" together. Set aside.


Heat the olive oil in a nonstick skillet and saute the onion until translucent. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant. Add the wax beans and cook until slightly tender. Add the edamame and stir in the sauce, stirring around until all the veggies are hot and coated with the sauce.


Place the kale/noodle combo on a serving dish or in individual bowls and top with some of the bean/peanut sauce mixture. Enjoy!

Thanks for reading! More soon...

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