Peanut Butter Sauce and Sesame with Green Tea Noodles

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I don't think I take advantage of this Asian grocery store nearly enough. Often times I am just overwhelmed with the choices of noodles, sauces, and produce here which is why I quickly grab my essentials - soba noodles, edamame and leave. Last time I was there, they had replaced my regular soba with green tea noodles so being a little fanatic with all things green tea, it was only natural they came home with me. peanut-butter-and-sesame-green-tea-noodles1

Since we are on the subject of grocery budgeting this week, I thought it was a perfect opportunity to showcase an inexpensive, healthy recipe that is not only easy to put together but also bursting with so many flavors. I adapted the recipe from soba noodle and edamame salad I regularly make but this time I stepped it up a notch and made the peanut butter sauce infused with sesame oil which is finger licking good. 

Soba means buckwheat in Japanese and are naturally gluten-free only if they are 100% made with buckwheat flour. If you are gluten-intolerant, check the ingredient list to make sure they contain only 100% buckwheat flour. The green tea noodle I used in this recipe is made with a combination of whole wheat and buckwheat flour therefore is not gluten-free. 

The noodles have a subtle green tea flavor but when mixed in with the peanut butter sauce, you can't really tell the difference. If you don't have green tea noodles, buckwheat or any other thin noodle of your choice will work too. 

When it comes to vegetables, it is pretty flexible and you can even add a protein of your choice right before eating. I usually add sturdy, different colored vegetables because it will hold longer without being too mushy. Some of my favorites are shredded cabbage, carrots, and edamame but I could see bell pepper and radish being a delicious addition to this salad. 

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Peanut Butter Sauce and Sesame with Green Tea Noodles
Serves: 4-6
Ingredients
  • 3-3.2 oz bundles of green tea noodles (or any other noodles of your choice)
  • 1 cup edamame, frozen
  • 2 cups shredded red cabbage
  • 2 cups shredded carrots
  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 3/4 cup natural, smooth peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup sesame oil + 1 tablespoon
  • 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
  • 2-3 tablespoon reduced sodium soy sauce
  • 2-3 heaping tablespoon sambal olek (use more or less per your taste)
  • 1 tablespoon red crushed pepper
  • 1/4 cup sesame seed, toasted
Instructions
  1. Boil green tea noodles as per instructions on the pack of the package. Towards the last few minutes, add frozen edamame to boil. Drain water, massage with little sesame oil in a large bowl.
  2. Meanwhile the noodles are boiling, make the peanut butter sauce. In a small bowl, combine peanut butter, sesame oil, rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, and sambal olek and whisk until blended well. Taste and adjust as necessary.
  3. Add the shredded vegetables on top of noodles, pour in the sauce and using a wooden spoon combine everything. Mix in toasted sesame seed and reserve some of the sesame seed for garnishing.
  4. Serve it immediately or chilled.