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Weekends are a great time to get creative and try out new things, but why not use THIS weekend to get creative and try out a new thing that is

easy,

healthy,

delicious?

You should!

You’ll love these.  They’re easy and delicious and you can make them in under half an hour!

Noodles are the only real requirement here, and some dried mushrooms.  You don’t even really have to use soba noodles…you could use whole wheat spaghetti!

Here’s what you DO need:

  • cooked, long noodles
  • water
  • dried mushrooms (an ounce or two – shiitake, porcini, mixed, whatever!)
  • fish base or fish sauce
  • soy sauce
  • sesame oil
  • Asian soup base (or mirin and more soy sauce, no worries)
  • vegetables
  • tofu, shrimp, or chicken (I had frozen fried tofu this time – delicious!)

The soup base is super duper great – but just add a splash extra of soy sauce and mirin (cooking wine) if you don’t have any base.  Same goes with the dashi (fish flakes) powder with the red lid – a few drops of fish sauce works great here too!

First, you’ll want to reconstitute the mushrooms.  Put them in a pan with a lid over low heat with a cup of water and 2 tablespoons soup base, OR 1/4 cup soy sauce and 2 tablespoons mirin or white wine or sake or beer or…you get it.  Add in a few dashes of dashi or fish sauce, cover the pan, and let them soften for 20 minutes or so.

Meanwhile, bring a pot of water to boil for the noodles and cut up whatever veggies you’re using.

I had cabbage and carrots, so that’s what went in here.  Use whatever you like, though!  I like to cut the veggies into long strips so they mix nicely with the noodles.

Heat a pan to medium heat and saute the veggies for a few minutes with a drizzle of sesame oil until they start to soften.

Lovely.  Now, once the mushrooms are reconstituted dump them and their cooking liquid into the pot.

Now, taste this and see what it needs!  Mine was a little thick and salty from the soup base so I added some water.  You can add more soy sauce, any flavor of stock you like, more fish flavor…whatever you think it needs!

Now, while the noodles finish cooking and you get your protein ready, let the soup heat through.

When you’re just ready to serve, add in your protein to warm it up – I had these great sheets of frozen fried tofu – they’re great!

Delicious.  We’re ready to eat!  When you drain soba noodles, be sure to rinse them so that they don’t stick together too much – they’re pretty starchy!

To serve, put a small pile of noodles in the bottom of a bowl.

Then, spoon on lots of veggies and broth.  You can top the dish with raw items like pickled ginger, cilantro, cucumbers, sliced scallions – whatever you can think of!

This is a great, easy way to get lots of protein and veggies into a dish all at once.  You could even make a soba bar – cook the soup with veggies, then have a few different proteins and toppings so people can build their own.  Fun!

Have a great weekend!

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