Sesame Tofu & Soba Noodles
8oz package soba (buckwheat noodles)*
1 Asian or Bosc pear
3 Tbs vegetable oil
8oz piece firm tofu, rinsed, patted dry, hard edges trimmed, and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
4 carrots, cut into 1 1/2-by 1/4-inch sticks
8oz fresh shiitake mushrooms caps only, thin sliced
4 scallions, sliced thin (about 1 1/2 cups)
2 Tbs finely chopped peeled fresh ginger
2 tsp sesame oil
1 Tbs tamari or soy sauce, or to taste
2 Tbs seasoned rice vinegar
1 Tbs sesame seeds, toasted lightly
Bring 5 quarts salted water to a boil for noodles.
Peel and cut pear into matchstick pieces.
In a large non-stick skillet heat 1 Tbs vegetable oil over moderately high heat and brown tofu. Transfer tofu to paper towels to drain and season with salt and pepper.
Add carrots to skillet and sauté, stirring, until just tender and golden brown. Transfer carrots with slotted spoon to a bowl. Add to skillet remaining 2 Tbs vegetable oil, mushrooms, scallions, ginger root, and pear and cook over moderate heat, stirring constantly, until vegetables are tender. Remove skillet from heat and stir in carrots.
Cook noodles in boiling water until al dente. Drain noodles and immediately rinse with cold water. In a large bowl toss noodles with 1 tsp sesame oil.
Return skillet to moderate heat and add 1/4 cup water, tamari or soy sauce, vinegar, and remaining teaspoon sesame oil. Bring mixture to a simmer and cook, stirring, until hot. Add noodles, tossing to combine and adding more water if necessary, and cook until heated through. Season noodles with salt and pepper and serve warm topped with tofu and sesame seeds.
Recipe Roundup January 2012