Soba Noodle Salad

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Please welcome guest author Garrett McCord who prepared this fabulous salad for us the other day. Big, big hit. ~Elise

“Very tangy and sweet! With just enough crunch from the peanuts.”

“It’s so colorful and aromatic, you can just smell the mint and garlic!”

The compliments Elise and I praised this salad with are plentiful. Really, this is a wonderful spring and summer salad, with Asian inspiration. Soba noodles, if you are not familiar with them, are thin Japanese noodles made with buckwheat flour, and are often served cold. Soba noodles can be found in the Asian aisle of many markets; they have a nice body to them and an earthy, old world taste. In this noodle salad, the mango, mint, and various other flavors contrast and match well with each other, giving the whole salad a good balance.

Soba Noodle Salad Recipe

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  • Yield: Serves 6.

You can make this dish a few hours in advanced, or even the night before and let the soba chill and marinate, just be sure not to add the peanuts, mint and basil until just before serving.

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 jalapeño chile pepper, seeded and minced
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • Zest of one lime
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 12 ounces soba noodles
  • 1 large red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 large ripe mango, peeled and chopped into cubes
  • 1 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1 cup chopped fresh mint
  • 1 cup chopped roasted, salted peanuts
  • Lime wedges for serving (optional)

Method

1 Place the rice vinegar, sugar, and salt in a saucepan over medium heat for 1-2 minutes until the sugar and salt dissolve. Stir in the garlic and jalapeño, and allow to cool. Add the lime juice, lime zest, and sesame oil and mix well.

2 Cook the noodles in salted water, until al dente, according to the package instructions. Drain and then rinse well under cool water. Transfer the noodles to a large bowl and toss with the dressing.

3 Add the mango, bell pepper, basil and mint. Toss and plate. Serve with chopped peanuts sprinkled over the top and lime wedges.

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Recipe adapted from Bon Appetit.

soba-noodle-salad-2.jpg

Links:
Garlic soba noodles from Heidi of 101 Cookbooks
Cold soba noodles with dipping sauce, a traditional Japanese way to eat soba noodles, from Maki of Just Hungry
Zaru soba from Tea and Cookies
More soba recipes at Food Blog Search

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Showing 4 of 19 Comments

  • Christine

    I never used to understand food purists that glorified “authentic” recipes and scorned fusion/Americanized dishes. I now understand. I’m a third generation Japanese American, and even to me, this recipe looks, pardon me, terrible. Japanese dishes are usually simple, meant to emphasize natural, delicate tastes. The only way cold soba should be eaten is with tsuyu (a dipping sauce made with soy sauce, sugar, mirin, and fish stock) garnished with finely chopped green onion, freshly grated ginger/daikon, and nori.

  • Meghan

    Delicious! I agree it was a little sweet, but it was also very complex and the sweetness was not overpowering. I did have A LOT of extra dressing pooling up in the bottom of my dish and it seemed sort of soggy at times. I would suggest adding the dressing cautiously, to make sure you are not putting too much on. You might have left over.

    Otherwise phenomenal summer side dish.

  • chitra

    I made these for my birthday picnic in June but edited it a bit by not putting as much sugar or rice vinegar. It was a hit!

  • Sofia

    We used about half a tablespoon of agave nectar in place of the sugar, and topped the salad with seared ahi tuna. It was great!

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