Spring Soba Salad with Creamy Sesame Dressing and Seasonal Vegetables
Source: Shaun King, PABU Izakaya
This recipe was demonstrated for CUESA’s Market to Table program on April 22, 2017.
All measurements are by weight, except as noted.
5½ ounces hulled sesame seeds
¾ ounce grated fresh ginger
⅓ ounce grated garlic
¼ ounce shiro dashi
2 ounces rice wine vinegar (Shiragiku brand preferred)
¾ ounce sugar
2¾ ounces mirin
2¾ ounces soy sauce
10½ ounces soba noodles
Salt and pepper
¼ ounce almond oil (or substitute hazelnut oil)
1½ ounces freshly squeezed lemon juice
½ cup assorted sprouts, such as lentil, mung bean, soy, and radish
¾ ounce English peas
¾ ounce shaved, bite-size pieces of asparagus
¾ ounce chiffonade of scallions
3½ ounces sesame dressing
¾ ounce shiso leaves (or substitute mint)
1 ounce toasted sunflower seeds
¾ ounce nutritional yeast flakes
¾ ounce Rayu (Japanese chili oil)
To make the dressing: Preheat the oven to 200°F. Toast the sesame seeds on a sheet pan for 10-15 minutes, until uniformly golden brown. Using a mortar and pestle, make a paste of the toasted sesame seeds. Add the ginger and garlic to the paste and work everything together until it’s a uniform paste consistency. Transfer to a bowl and add the remaining ingredients, mixing thoroughly. This can be stored, covered and refrigerated, for up to 7 days.
To make the salad: Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil and set up a bowl of ice water for shocking. Add the noodles, reduce the heat to a simmer, and cook for 4 minutes. Shock in ice water. Toss the cooled noodles with the almond oil and lemon juice. Add the sprouts, English peas, and asparagus. Add the measured amount of dressing and toss gently. Divide the salad among 4 plates, placing the noodles in the center of each. Top each with shiso leaves, sunflower seeds, and nutritional yeast, and drizzle with chili oil.