Soba noodles with stir-fried vegetables is a quick, easy and delicious healthy option for meatless Monday, or any day of the week. Soba noodles cook in a only a few minutes, the veggies get a quick sauté and dinner is done. From fridge to fork in less than 20 minutes – faster if you prep vegetable the night before.
It’s another New Year and once again, after the gluttony that was Thanksgiving and Christmas overindulgence, it’s time to rein it back in. One way that we have decided to do that around here is sticking to a “meatless Monday”.
While we were whooping it up in Vancouver a few months ago, we had a warm soba noodle appetizer at our favorite sushi restaurant. It was loaded with seafood and unbelievably delicious. I wanted to have something reminiscent of that salad, but suitable for a vegetarian dinner. The only restriction I gave myself (aside from the seafood) was that I had to use what I had in the kitchen. It wasn’t like there was a “rule” in play… I just didn’t feel like going to store. Out of sheer laziness, deliciousness was born!
Use the Vegetables You Have
Luckily, I have had some really great meals as a result of refusing to go to the store. What I hope you take away from that statement is this: use the recipe as a starting point. You can swap out ingredients for what you have on hand. Recipes like this should be fluid, not necessarily set in stone. This is also a fantastic use of leftover bits of veggies that you had from a previous dinner or perhaps that forgotten zucchini relegated to the deepest depths of the fridge (or is that just MY fridge?). If you generally have the basics of the veggie world (onion, peppers, garlic), you are halfway home. The sauce and the noodles will (likely) require a trip to the store unless you also have an obsession with Asian ingredients, and for that I offer my deepest apologies.
I will give you one small suggestion: make extra. It makes a great lunch the next day.
- 1 package soba noodles, cooked according to package directions
- 1/2 medium size head of white or Napa cabbage, thinly sliced
- 1 red, orange or yellow bell pepper, thinly sliced
- 1 large red onion, thinly sliced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 3 cups broccoli florets
- 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
- 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
- 3 TB hoisin sauce
- 2 TB sambal oelek
- 2 TB mirin
- 2 TB toasted sesame oil
- 1 TB brown sugar
- 2 - 3 TB soy sauce
- Mix all ingredients for sauce in a small sauce pot and heat on low, whisking occasionally until it is fully combined and smooth.
- Cook cabbage on medium high heat until it just begins to color, remove from pan and set aside.
- Add onions, garlic and peppers to the pan. Cook for a few minutes, then add broccoli. When broccoli is cooked to your liking, add the cabbage back into the pan and toss to combine.
- In a large bowl, toss vegetables and sauce together until they are evenly coated, then lightly toss noodles in and serve.
- Garnish with chopped scallions and/or black and white sesame seeds
- Cook soba noodles, drain and rinse with cold water. Drizzle a little sesame oil over them and gently toss so they don't stick.
- snow peas
- bamboo shoots
- bok choy
- sugar snap peas
- Chinese long beans