soba

15 minutes healthy noodle recipe - Spicy Asparagus Soba Stir Fry

I am a noodle person.  Maybe this is why it doesn’t bother me for living in Italy.  I also live real close to this organic supermarket called NaturaSí.  The shop sells practically everything you could possibly think of and most products are Fairtrade certified.  This is Italy’s largest supermarket chain specializing in the sales of organic food items while fully respecting the sustainability parameters.  The pricing is indeed slightly higher but I think it is justified by the high quality and authenticity of the products.  For those who practice a sustainable living in Italy, NaturaSí is certainly the ideal choice. 

What came to surprise me is that NaturaSí actually carries a lot of Japanese food produce.  So whenever I get a little homesick and long for fusion meals,  I can just pop by there to get some soba or rice noodles. 

Here are my extremely easy noodle recipe ideas for the busy bees! 

Spicy Asparagus Soba Stir Fry

Servings: 2 persons

Preparation Time: 5 minutes

Cooking Time: less than 10 minutes

Ingredients: 

1/2 lb fresh asparagus, cut in 1-inch pieces, julienned the stalk parts and leave the heads

1 garlic, finely chopped

1 stalk spring onion, finely chopped

1 tsp minced fresh ginger

1/2 chili, finely chopped

1 radish, slivered *optional

1 tbsp mirin

1/4 cup soy sauce

1/4 cup water

1 tbsp sesame seeds

200g soba or mei fun (rice noodle)

sesame oil or extra-virgin olive oil

Instructions: 

1) Cook soba according to its packaging label.  After soba is cooked, rinse with cold water and drain well.  Set aside.

2) Preheat a saucepan with 2-3 tbsp oil on medium-low heat, cook chopped garlic, spring onion, chilli, and ginger 1-2 minutes.  

3) Stir in asparagus and mirin.  Cook 1-2 minutes.  

4) Add water and soy sauce, put a lid on and let the vegetables cook 3-5 minutes.  

5) Add soba and mix well.  Season if necessary.  Heat off. 

6) Garnish with some sesame seeds, radish, chopped spring onion, and a drizzle of sesame oil before serving.  

Spicy Asparagus Soba Stir Fry

Stir Fry Veggies & Rice Noodle -- Here is the mei fun (rice noodle) version stir fry.  The steps are pretty much the same as the one before except I used zucchini instead of asparagus.   

Cold Veggies Soba - another extremely easy soba salad I like to make for cooling the steamy hot summer.  

Ingredients for dressing:

1/4 soy sauce

1/3 water

1 tsp minced garlic 

1 tsp chopped spring onion

1 tsp minced ginger

1 tbsp mirin

1/2 chili, seeded, finely chopped

1/4 lemon or 1/2 lime juice and zest

2-3 tbsp sesame oil 

extra-virgin olive oil

crispy tofu and soba salad with spicy miso-lime dressing

This is another no-brainer salad recipe.  It might take a bit of time for preparing the crispy tofu BUT it's all worth it.  This is the kind of salad that any meat lovers would appreciate because it is just so tasty.  The steps are simple and let me go straight to its recipe.  

Stay warm everyone!  

Cindy xx

Crispy Tofu & Soba Salad with Spicy Miso-Lime Dressing

Servings: 2 small bowls for 2 persons or 1 large bowl for 1 very hungry person 

Preparation Time: 10-15 minutes

Cook Time: less than 10 minutes

Ingredients: 

100g cooked soba, rinsed with cold water and drained

1/2 carrot, julienned 

50-80g extra-firm tofu, cubed

1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs

1 whisked egg

1-2 tbsp garlic powder

1 tbsp paprika

1 large bowl mixed greens

1 handful chopped spring onions

1 tbsp sesame seeds

2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

Miso dressing ingredients:

2-3 tbsp white miso paste

1/4 cup water

1/2 garlic clove, finely chopped

1/2 green and 1/2 red chili, finely chopped

1 tsp fresh grated ginger

1 fresh lime zest and juice

1-2 tbsp honey

1-2 tsp sesame oil

Instructions: 

 1) Mix breadcrumbs, garlic powder, and paprika in a regular size bowl.  Season.  Mix well.  

2) Whisk an egg in another bowl, coat the tofu with egg first then follow by coating with breadcrumbs.  Set aside. 

3) Preheat a frying pan with oil on medium-low heat, cook the tofu for 1-2 minutes then turn to the other side and cook for 1 minute.  (Make sure you don’t burn the tofu.  If your oil is too hot, then reduce your heat) 

4) For the dressing, mix all ingredients in a small bowl.  

5) Get a large bowl, add the mixed greens, carrots, and soba noodles.  Mix well.  

7) Place your crispy tofu on top of the salad and garnish with some chopped spring onions and coriander(optional).

8) Serve with a twist of lime juice, a drizzle of olive oil, and the spicy miso-lime dressing on the side.

Crispy Tofu & Soba Salad with Spicy Miso-Lime Dressing

a perfect light meal for the gals....

I bought some real fresh Chinese spinach yesterday and because of this steaming heat outside, I honestly don't feel like having anything too heavy.  If Marco was here, I would throw in a piece of grilled fish and maybe a couple of onigiri(rice ball) with mentaiko(marinated roe) to fill him up.  Since it was just for myself, I'll stick with my favorite summer veggies. :)  I think these ingredients are definitely accessible anywhere and they shouldn't cost you a fortune.  The cooking time is really just cooking the soba and spinach which only takes about 5 minutes.  The rest are just chopping and marinating.  So cooling and so healthy!  

I love the variety of dishes that Asian meals offer.  It makes me feel like I am having a feast even if I am eating alone.  :) 

cucumber n carrot salad

3 baby cucumbers, shaved and discard the middle seeds part

1 small carrot, shaved

1 tsp sesame seeds

2-3 tbsp rice vinegar

a pinch brown sugar

Instructions: Mix well in a bowl and refrigerate for about 15-30 minutes before serving.  Remove excess water (before serving) if you want.  

sesame spinach salad 

1lb spinach

2 tbsp sesame oil

1-2 tbsp sesame seeds

1 tbsp brown sugar

2-3 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp mirin

Instructions: 

1) Cook the spinach in a pot of boiling water for less than 30 seconds.  

2) Drain the spinach and run it in cold water; dry with a kitchen towel to absorb all the liquid.

3) Chop the spinach and transfer to a small bowl. 

4) Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well.  

5) Refrigerate for at least 10-15 minutes before serving.  

cold soba and sauce

100g soba, cooked according to the package label

1 tbsp chopped spring onion

1 tsp grated ginger

1/2 tsp wasabi

1/4 (3 tbsp) small bowl soy sauce

1/4 (3 tbsp) small bowl mirin

1 tbsp rice vinegar

1 tsp brown sugar

1/2 small bowl water

Instructions: 

1) Run cold water to the cooked soba, drain well.  Transfer a serving dish. 

2) Get a small bowl, add mirin, soy sauce, rice vinegar, water and a little bit of grated ginger and ginger juice.

3) Get a small soy sauce dish, place wasabi, grated ginger, and chopped spring onion as a side dish for the cold soba.*

* People normally pair cold soba with a quail egg but I don't have any plus I'm not a huge fan of quail egg so that's all I'm serving here.