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
- 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