Cold Soba Noodles and Quick Pickled Cucumbers

Toronto’s going through one hell of a heat wave this week and it also just happens to be the week right after our air conditioner breaks! YAY…

This means that I’m extremely hesitant to use any form of heat to cook and I’d really rather keep the stove to a minimum.

Cold sandwiches can get boring really easily, so how about some cold soba noodles?

Soba NoodlesIt’s super easy to make, so delicious and actually pretty healthy for you! Compared to common spaghetti, soba (aka buckwheat) noodles are about as nutrient-dense but with different vitamin and mineral levels and a third less calories. (See: USDA’s nutrient database sheets for spaghetti and soba noodles.)

I even made my own soba sauce! Even though I couldn’t find any dashi, bonito or kombu, I improvised with some mirin, dark soya sauce and white wine vinegar. (I know, I should’ve used rice wine vinegar, but I didn’t realize I ran out until I actually got home!)

Soba Noodles

It’s seriously so refreshing after a long, hot summer day! Even though the soba sauce is typically used for dipping, I just love drenching my noodles in it.

I paired it with some quick pickled cucumbers that I also kind of improvised but it’s a pretty simple, sweet pickling solution.

Quick Pickled Cucumbers

Cold Soba Noodles + Dipping Sauce

Takes: 15 minutes
Makes: 2 servings

2 bunches of soba noodles (about 190g)
1L water

1/4 cup medium or dark soya sauce
2-3 tbsp mirin
1-2 tbsp white wine vinegar (can and should sub for rice wine vinegar)
1 tsp sesame seeds
Water, to dilute to taste

Mix sauce ingredients and set aside

Bring water to a boil and cook the soba noodles for 6-7 minutes, until soft. Rinse with cold water 2-3 times.

Serve cold or at room temperature with dipping sauce on the side. Slurp loudly.

Quick Pickled Cucumbers

Takes: 40 minutes, minimum
Makes: About a cup

1 field cucumber, cut into slices
1 tbsp + 1 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp mirin
2 tbsp white wine vinegar (can sub for rice wine vinegar)
1 tsp chili flakes
Water, to dilute to taste

Stir all ingredients together until thoroughly mixed. Cover and set aside for at least half an hour. Serve as needed.

Refrigerate covered. It can probably stay for about a week before it gets too soggy.

What’s your favourite cold meal for the summer?



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