Soba with Carrots and Cucumbers

Soba is one of my favorite things to make when it's hot out. It's served chilled and goes great with fresh vegetables and a light sauce. Plus, the only thing you need to cook are the noodles, which is perfect if your kitchen gets as hot as mine does in the summer. You can get soba noodles (which are just buckwheat noodles) at most Asian supermarkets. It comes with the noodles individually portioned, and for two people I usually use three portions of noodles.

Ingredients (for two)

  • Soba noodles (three portions)
  • one carrot
  • half a cucumber
  • scallions
  • 2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp sesame oil
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 1/4 tsp gochujang (Korean red pepper paste- optional)
Put on a pot of water to boil. While waiting for the water, peel carrot and grate with a box grater or shave with a vegetable peeler. You want thin strips. You could also buy pre-shredded carrot instead. Then, peel your cucumber, cut in half, and cut each half into quarters. Remove seeds and cut into thin strips. Chop scallions, about 1/4 cup worth. When water is boiling, add soba and cook until tender (it only takes a few minutes). Drain pasta and rinse with cold water until noodles have cooled.

Mix vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, honey, and gochujang, if using (you could also use sriracha instead). You may want to adjust your sauce according to your taste. I really like a sweet and sour sauce with this dish, so I use a good amount of vinegar and honey, but if you prefer more soy sauce or a spicier sauce, then add more of those ingredients.

In a large bowl, mix together the soba, cucumber, carrots, scallions, and sauce. Sprinkle sesame seeds on top, if desired.

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