Sunday, August 10, 2008

Soba noodle salad with tofu-peanut dressing


In march this year, I went to a yoga holiday to Marrakech. It was something I had been longing do for a while but none of the offers I found appealed to me. Bali? Too far for a week. A hut on La Gomera where the yogis would cook their own vegan meals? A little too hippy-dippy for my taste. And the worst - sharing a room with a complete stranger - please, could there be anything less relaxing? I had almost given up when I found in:spa retreats. Exactly what I needed. Pricey, yes, but with its combination of luxury accomodation, yoga, fitness and a healthy dose of pampering it ticked all the right boxes. The package came with nutritional advice, too and while I was probably doing better than some of my fellow retreaters who admitted to downing a bottle of red wine on their own after a hectic day at work (what?) or relying on ready-made meals most days, I had a simple, yet very important lesson to learn: the lesson about protein. I had often wondered why my - in my eyes - rather healthy lunches of some wholegrain or other with vegetables left me hungry and tempted by the sweets in the cafeteria by four o'clock. Lack of protein, of course! I had to pay a handsome sum of money and travel to North Africa to learn that!

Soba noodle salads are a staple in my lunchbox and I like to think that I'm a bit clever, adding protein with silken tofu blended into the dressing. And what's more: you could feed these noodles to people who wouldn't normally go anywhere near tofu and they would gobble them up with delight, the unsuspecting souls.

Soba noodles with tofu-peanut dressing
(serves 2)

  • 90g soba noodles
  • 3 large handfulls chopped vegetables (cucumber, peppers, radishes, spring onions...)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs - whatever you fancy
  • a quarter of a block silken tofu (equals roughly 4 tablespoons)
  • 1 tablespoon peanut butter or thai peanut sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon chili sauce
  • soy sauce to taste
Cook the noodles in salted water until tender. In the meantime, blend all the remaining ingredients except for the herbs and the vegetables together until smooth. Pour some of the cooking water into a cup, drain the noodles and refresh under the cold tap. Set aside. Stir the reserved cooking water into the dressing. Taste the dressing and add whatever you think needs to be added. The measurements given above are approximative, you might want to change them or add other ingredients. Put the noodles, vegetables and herbs and dressing into a large bowl and toss well.

3 comments:

The Bee Tree said...
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Anonymous said...

Dear honeybee

I made this tonight and it was truely delicious. So THANK YOU!!! But now I have a problem: what do I do with the left over tofu???? I have absolutely no experience from cooking with tofu and need your help...

Yours m.

Honeybee said...

Good question! I like to blend it and add it to tomato sauce for pasta. Or blend it with fresh fruit to make a smoothie that keeps you going until noon.