I usually resist filling my kitchen drawers with gadgets I won’t use; but there were too many instances when I wanted a julienne peeler and now I regret waiting so long to purchase one. This dish is mostly vegetables with a bit of noodles, and that is all thanks to the “vegetable noodles” made with the julienne peeler. You could make this dish with grated vegetables or thin slices on a mandoline, but the peeler gets them a similar size to the soba, so the textures marry perfectly. If you like a more noodled salad, just double the amount of soba.
Take the liberty to swap in a different protein—some tempeh or chicken sautéed in the same ingredients would be a nice alternative. The dressing here is similar to the Tahini Citrus Miso Dressing, just a bit lighter without the tahini. Either one works great for a crisp, fresh salad, perfect for picnics or work/school lunches.
Drain the tofu and press out the excess liquid between layers of a folded clean dishcloth. In a large skillet, heat the coconut oil over medium heat. Chop the tofu into 1/2-inch cubes and add them to the hot pan. Sauté gently until the edges begin to brown. Add the soy sauce, maple syrup, and pepper. Stir and cook for 6 to 8 minutes longer, until the edges are crisp. Set aside to cool.
Cook the soba noodles until al dente, rinse with cold water, and drain. Seed and slice the bell pepper into thin strips. Use a julienne peeler to make long strips from the carrot and cucumber, keeping away from the inner seedy part of the cucumber. Put the noodles and prepared vegetables into a large mixing bowl.
For the dressing, whisk together the miso, ginger, honey, lime zest and juice, sesame oil, and Sriracha. This much can be done up to 2 days in advance and kept covered in the fridge.
When ready to serve, pour the dressing over the veggies and noodles, add the chopped cilantro and toss to coat. Top the bowl with the green onions, sesame seeds, and tofu. Serve each portion with a quarter of an avocado.
Each week, The Splendid Table brings you stories that expand your world view, inspire you to try something new, and show how food brings us together. We rely on you to do this. You have the power to keep us cooking, sharing these stories, and helping you in the kitchen.
Donate today for as little as $5.00 a month. Your gift only takes a few minutes and has a lasting impact on The Splendid Table.
Reprinted with permission from Sprouted Kitchen Bowl + Spoon by Sara Forte, copyright © 2015. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.