The hubs and I were brainstorming dinner ideas. We weren’t that hungry but needed to eat so I roughly described a cold noodle dish with bacon, sesame seeds, and cherry tomatoes and the hubs told me to “just make it”. Somehow I was surprised the hubs had never had a cold noodle dish with those elements. My mother also makes a similar cold noodle dish and adds ham and cucumber slices – perfect picnic food. Her seasoning is slightly different though. One day I need to get that recipe.
I used Japanese thin udon noodles I bought from a Japanese supermarket back home. This recipe is from one of Nigella Lawson’s cookbooks. I watched it being made on one of her cooking shows and was inspired to make it. It doesn’t have any bacon though (so I didn’t add bacon in the end) and also doesn’t have any cherry tomatoes (but I added those in anyways). The recipe is simple, yet satisfying and can be served with other dishes like pot stickers (which we also ate), dumplings or a salad.
Soba Noodles with Sesame Seeds
(taken from Nigella Lawson’s Forever Summer; recipe here)
Serves 4, when part of a meal.
- 75 grams sesame seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 250 grams soba noodles
- 2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar
- 5 teaspoons soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons honey or 2.5 teaspoons brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons sesame oil
- 5 spring onions
- Halved cherry tomatoes (optional)
- Japanese cucumbers, cut into thin match sticks (optional)
- Picnic ham, sliced into strips (optional)
- Toast the sesame seeds in a dry pan over a high heat until they look golden brown, and tip them into a bowl.
- Bring a large pan of water to the boil and add some salt. Put in the soba noodles and cook them for about 6 minutes (or according to packet instructions) until they are tender but not mushy. Have a bowl of iced water waiting to plunge them into after draining.
- In the bowl you are going to serve them in, mix the vinegar, soy sauce, honey/brown sugar and oil. Then finely slice the spring onions and put them into the bowl with the cooled, drained noodles and mix together thoroughly before adding the sesame seeds and tossing again. Toss in other ingredients, if desired.
- Leave the sesame seed noodles for about half an hour to let the flavours develop, although this is not absolutely necessary or sometimes even possible.