I didn’t know what to call this recipe (as you may have noticed). I’ve seen it been called a salad before, but it somehow gives the impression that it is to be eaten alongside something else, a side dish. On the other hand, a noodle dish is almost always in a hot sauce or broth. This occupies a spot somewhere in between – hot noodles with a salad-y dressing. But semantics aside, this noodle dish is wholesome and substantial by itself. I make a plain version with just the noodles and dressing when I’m in a rush to get some food out, but I often add bits of broccoli, cauliflower, peppers, or shredded red cabbage for extra colour and flavour. Some leftover roast chicken tossed in works wonderfully too. It’s quick, easy, and comes together in minutes, that is, in the time that it takes to cook the noodles. The chronology of that: I got home from the gym yesterday at 6:30 pm and put the noodles on to boil while I took a shower (don’t recommend leaving the stove on unattended, but you got to do what you got to do, right?) 6:40, noodles were done and left to drain while I made the dressing: bung all the ingredients into a jar, shake, done. Chopped coriander and spring onions on top, 6:45, dinner is serrrrrved!
I started making peanut butter recently and would highly recommend giving it a shot, especially if you live with a peanut butter fiend like my husband. A jar of the stuff, along with some sesame butter (see notes below) make weeknight dinners a breeze. I use sesame butter and tahini interchangeably so it goes in hummus, stirred into oats, spread on toast, in a salad dressing, marinade.. we go through a lot of it around here.
I sometimes make this dressing in advance and refrigerate (keeps well for up to three days). That way, I just boil the noodles and toss it through for an even speedier meal. Just when you thought it couldn’t get better!
Mix all the ingredients for the dressing in a screwtop jar and shake well. Taste and adjust seasoning. Can be used right away or refrigerated for up to three days.
Cook the soba noodles as per packet instructions. Meanwhile, grill the prawns. Add a little oil to a griddle pan or regular pan and cook the prawns for two minutes a side. Sprinkle some salt on top and set aside.
Drain the pasta and add to a large bowl. Pour in almost all the dressing, chopped coriander, chilli, and spring onions. Toss to combine and add more dressing if required. Top with the grilled prawns, peanuts, and sesame seeds with a wedge of lime on the side. Serve hot or at room temperature.
*Adapted from GoodFood Magazine
- Make your own sesame butter by blending toasted sesame seeds with a pinch of salt in a blender or food processor for 4-5 minutes, making sure to scrape down often until you have a smooth paste. Can be refrigerated for up to two weeks.