I initially made this super moreish dish to go with my Vietnamese sesame-crusted tofu but it’s a fairly staple noodle dish is my house. It is inspired by a delicious dish at Chop Chop in Edinburgh and Glasgow – home to the most authentic Chinese cooking I’ve tasted, outside of China. I never used to be a fan of Chinese food – full of MSG (monosodium glutamate or ajinomote as my dad would always call it, using it’s Japanese manufactured name) making it gloopy and salty. But that was until I travelled across China in 2011 and tasted real Chinese food. Unfortunately being vegetarian i China was tough – tofu stew would come pork in it, vegetable soup would have the smallest ever crabs floating in it… but when I was lucky enough to find some genuine veggie fare, I was in heaven. So since being back in the UK, Chinese and South Asian cooking has become a staple in my kitchen.
I free-styled this based on what I like and what I had in stock, so this recipe can be a guide for you to adapt if you so wish.
Peanut and mustard noodle salad
- 85g soba noodles (1 bundle of Yutaka brand noodles)
- 1 tbsp mustard seeds
- ½ inch fresh ginger, grated
- Fresh garlic, 2-3 cloves, crushed (depending on taste)
- 1 fresh red chilli, diced (add more to taste)
- 2-3 tbsp (depending on taste) chunky peanut butter
- 2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
- 1 tbsp lime juice
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- Salt, pinch
- Red or yellow pepper, long slices
- Cucumber, long slices
- Carrot, long slices (or julienned)
- Fresh coriander, handful
- Crushed chilli flakes
- Cook the noodles in boiling water for 5 minutes, or as per the directions on the packet. Drain and rinse under cold water and leave to fully cool.
- Dry fry the mustard seeds until they start to pop.
- In a bowl, mix the mustard seeds with the rest of the ingredients, apart from the vegetables and coriander, and blend into a dressing. You can use a food processor, but if doing by hand add the peanut butter a little at the time and mix gradually from paste to dressing. If required add water to get the consistency correct.
- Add the noodles and vegetables and mix. Garnish with coriander and crushed chillies to serve.