Comfort food: Peanut noodles


So, we’re having a little election today; you might have heard something about it. It’s not a big deal, really; I’m not really even…

..okay. That is a blatant lie. Though I would never describe myself as overtly political, this election has got me tied in knots and all a-twitter. I waited nearly two hours this morning to exercise my right to vote, and having done so I’m equal parts hopeful and terrified, as well as totally in awe of how many people are turning out.

However! Election Fever means I’m in desperate need of comfort food. Unfortunately, things have been so crazed in the last few weeks that I haven’t really had much time to cook said comfort food; AND, tonight, my sister and I will be watching the returns from the relative safety of our favorite watering hole, which means I won’t be cooking, either.

Here’s what I’d cook if I were: equal parts starchy, sweet, salty, and awesome. Just what the voter ordered.


Soba noodles with peanut sauce

For the dressing:
1/2 c peanut butter
1/4 c soy sauce
1/3 c hot water
1-2 tsp sesame oil
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1/2 tsp five spice powder
2 cloves garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
1×1-inch knob ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
1 tsp honey or brown sugar

For the salad itself:
8 oz dried soba noodles
1 red pepper, finely julienned
8 oz marinated tofu*
2-3 scallions, cut into matchsticks
2 tbsp fresh basil, shredded

*For the marinated tofu
8 oz firm tofu, drained and cut into 1″ cubes
3 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsbp rice vinegar
1/2 tsp sesame oil
1 tbsp sesame seeds
pinch red pepper flakes

  1. Set a large pot of water to boiling; prepare the soba noodles according to packet instructions; drain and set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, prepare the tofu: combine all six ingredients in a bowl, toss, and set aside. You can marinate this stuff up to four hours–the longer you can marinate, the better it will taste!
  3. Make the dressing: Toss all the dressing ingredients into your food processor and whiz it around until you have a nice uniform sauce.
  4. Combine noodles, sauce, tofu, peppers, scallions and basil in a large bowl; toss well.

I served this with a Jicama and Asian Pear salad, but it would also be nice with some braised bok choy or a similarly green and crunchy vegetable.

P.S. Have you voted yet? You should go vote. Seriously. All the cool kids are doing it.

In asian, pasta, peanut, recipe, tofu, vegetarian

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