Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Sesame Soba Noodles with Edamame Beans

I can't remember when I made this dish, but it was on one of those afternoons when I was feeling a bit lazy and wanted something relatively quick and easy on the table.  So instead of Italian style pasta coated in some flavoursome green pesto, I made noodles, yes you read right Noodles!

For those of you who have been reading this blog from the beginning, will know that I have had an aversion to noodles simply because of those 'artificial flavoured noodles in a pot'.  These potted noodles only entered my parents home in my teen years, when one of my brothers suddenly took a liking to them.  Well I promised, I'd try proper noodles at some time in my life and here it is - Soba noodles, the first of many noodle variations.
Soba, or Japanese buckwheat noodles, have a distinct nutty flavour.  Well I am delighted to share that the Soba noodles I ate are nothing like those instant our over hot water ones with a strange colour, smell and slimey texture. The colours were earthy and the flavour distinctly nutty.  I have to add, I also found soba noodles much lighter than its Italian friend spaghetti that is traditionally made from durum wheat.

To my soba noodles I added some fresh carrots and edamame beans.  Fresh edamame beans still in their pods were introduced to the British public a couple of years ago as the next superfood full of nutritional qualities.  The edamame bean was hailed as an amazing green bean to have virtually all the health benefits of meat.  I have read that some farmers in Kent, U.K are growing edamame beans, but I have to admit I haven't seen them in supermarket yet.  For this recipe, I've used frozen edamame beans.  Edamame beans look very similar to the broad bean, but taste is completely different - much more nuttier and creamier.  
I am submitting this to I am submitting this to Presto Pasta Nights #220. PPN was founded by Ruth Daniels of Once Upon a Feast and each Friday night a different host posts a roundup of pasta dishes submitted by bloggers from around the world. This week PPN is being hosted by Ruth.
Sesame Soba Noodles with edamame beans
Serves 3 - 4
Soba noodles to serve 3 - 4 people
4 tablespoons tahini paste
3 - 4 cloves garlic, crushed
3 tablespoons tamari or other soy sauce
2 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
100ml - 150ml water, as required
1 tablespoon peanut oil
1 large carrot, cut into small matchsticks
75g - 100g frozen edamame beans (or peas), defrosted
1 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted
Cook the soba noodles according to packet instructions. 
In a blender, process the tahini, garlic, tamari, 1 tablespoon sesame oil and enough water to obtain a smooth, sauce like consistency.  Transfer to a small saucepan and heat over low heat, stirring until warm.  Keep the sauce warm
Heat the peanut oil in a medium pan over high heat.  Add the carrot matchsticks and stir fry for a couple of minutes, then add in the edamame beans (or peas) and stir fry until hot, about 1 minute.  Reduce the heat to low and keep the vegetables warm.
When the soba noodles are cooked, drain and place in large serving bowl.  Drizzle on the remaining 1 tablespoon sesame oil and toss to coat evenly.  Add the vegetables and sauce and toss to combine.  Sprinkle with sesame seeds and serve immediately.  Adapted from Vegan Planet by Robin Robertson.


  1. This sounds delicious! I love many types of noodles although soba, udon and the big flat rice ones are my favourites. Must look this recipe up in my copy of Vegan Planet which doesn't get enough use.

  2. I love soba noodles and find the sesame seeds simply obligatory with them (I put grilled sesame seeds practically everywhere, but that's another story...). I still have to taste edamame. I can also buy it frozen here.
    Lovely idea of a healthy dish!

  3. This looks amazing! I love soba and sesame together!

  4. Thank you Mel.
    I've yet to try udon noodles and surely will in time.

    One thing about Vegan Planet that I've noted - the recipes are very similar to Vegetarian Planet. Still good book.

    Hi Sissi.
    The soba noodles and sesame seeds combo was really good, but i will have to try different soba recipes.

    Do try the edamame beans, I'd be interested to know what you think of them.

  5. Thank you Lrong.
    I was surprised at how much I enjoyed the dish.

    Thanks Charlie.
    Your the second person to give the thumbs up to the Soba and sesame combo - it must be popular!

  6. Lots of trendy restaurants now serve bowls of Edamame beans as a nibble with drinks or as a pre-starter for a meal. Personally, I don't like them much - certainly not on their own - but served in the way you suggest, they may well be nicer! :) And I'd certainly enjoy the rest of the dish. I'm a great fan of most types of noodle.

  7. That is interesting to note Mark.
    Are the edamame beans steamed or roasted?
    I'm pleased you like the sound of this recipe. I am hoping to try some other noodles later in the year, next one the list is udon noodles.

  8. I didn't know you had a noodle-aversion. Glad the soba noodles were to your taste - I have sometimes found them a bit soggy because they get too soft so easily - edamame beans are something I don't think I have ever seen for sale, but they always seem interesting in the recipes I see like this one

  9. Tis true Johanna,
    Yes, they do cook pretty quick.
    I too have still to find fresh edamame beans, but the frozen version was fine too. Hope you find some in the freezer section of one of the supermarkets.

  10. I love that you gave soba noodles a retry! Thanks for sharing this much healthier version with Presto Pasta Night.s

  11. Thank you Ruth.
    I liked it and will certainly be making it again. I hop emy experience has encouraged others to give it a go.


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