Soba Noodles
with Grilled Vegetables and Sesame-Ginger Dressing



This cool vegetarian noodle dish is a perfect meal for a hot summer day. Since it is served at room temperature, you can prepare everything several hours ahead, then assemble it at the last minute. The dressing keeps overnight in the refrigerator.



2 tablespoons minced ginger
1/4 cup mirin (sweet rice wine)
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
3 tablespoons tahini (sesame paste)
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
3 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 teaspoon sesame oil

Make the Dressing

1. Combine all the ingredients in a saucepan and heat over medium-low heat, stirring until the tahini is dissolved. Transfer to a bowl and set aside to cool. (To store, transfer the dressing into a glass jar with a tight-fitting lid; it will keep for a couple of days refrigerated. To serve, add 1 to 2 tablespoons water to the dressing and heat in a small saucepan until the sesame paste is dissolved. Let cool before serving.)

Makes 3/4 cup



1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 cup mirin (sweet rice wine)
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
6 shiitake mushrooms, stems removed
3 leeks
1 pound asparagus, tough stem ends removed
1 cup snow peas
2 bundles soba (buckwheat) noodles
2 cups bean sprouts

Make the Noodles

2. Heat the grill.

3. While waiting for the grill to get hot, combine the sugar, mirin, soy sauce, and sesame oil in a large bowl and whisk to mix. Add the mushrooms, leeks, asparagus, and snow peas. Toss lightly and set aside.

4. Put a fine-mesh grill rack over the regular rack. Put the mushrooms, leeks, and asparagus on the grill over medium-high heat and brush with the marinade. Grill the asparagus until they are slightly charred and the color has brightened, about 2 minutes. Grill the leeks until slightly charred and soft, about 3 minutes. Grill the mushrooms until slightly charred and soft, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Put the snow peas on the grill last and cook until the color brightens, about 1 minute.

5. When they are cool enough to handle, slice the asparagus, leeks, and mushrooms into thin diagonal slices. Set aside.

6. Cook the soba in a large pot of boiling water until soft, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain in a strainer and rinse well with cool water. Squeeze the noodles to extract all the excess water. Transfer to a bowl. Add the bean sprouts and grilled vegetables.

7. Just before serving, add the dressing to the noodles, and mix well.

Makes 6 servings


Buy the Book!


Asian Grilling
85 Satay, Kebabs, Skewers and
Other Asian-Inspired Recipes for Your Barbecue
by Su-Mei Yu
William Morrow, June 2002
ISBN: 0066211190
Hardcover, 176 pages
$24.95; $37.95 (CAN)
Recipe reprinted by permission.


Asian Grilling



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