Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Buckwheat Noodles Stir Fry

Blog's Category:  My Staple Food, My Own Fast and Easy, International

Buckwheat Noodles Stir Fry


Interesting, that being dedicated buckwheat lover all my life (see my post Buckwheat Kasha), I discovered buckwheat noodles, often called soba noodles, relatively recently, wondering around exotic foods in asian store. It was some years ago, since then I've being experimenting with it and got some good results, such as yummy  Soba Noodles with Peanut Butter Sauce . The recipe below is another delicious play around buckwheat noodles that I'm going to take on board of my ultra-diverse everyday menu. 

Here is the history of this recipe - I liked a lot that sauce I made recently for Lazy Chicken in Black Bean Sauce.html and decided why not to apply the same sauce idea to make something good for my brothers/sisters-in-vegetarianism? So, gathering whatever vegetables I had around, throwing healthy soba noodles in it and nurturing all this in my win-win Black Bean sauce, I've got this stir fry below. Results were outstanding and deserving to be entered in my archives. So here it is - vegetarian Buckwheat Noodles Stir Fry.

Taste Description

As, perhaps, any stir fry, this particular stir fry is very filling even though there is no "obvious" proteins in it. And, as any stir fry, it has multi-layered taste structure. Subtle tastes and flavors of different vegetables, overlayed with even softer taste of soba noodles, taken onto another level by bright notes of black bean sauce. King of Asian cuisine perception, sweet-&-sour combination, is very pronounced here as well. Given medium-to-mild quantity of red pepper flakes, these noodles have nice soul-warming kick to it. Very comforting dish!

How to Serve

Serve right from a stove, hot and breathing. Though if you miss the oportunity to enjoy it right away, no worries - it will be great for your lunch tomorrow, just warm it up.

Buckwheat Noodles Stir Fry

  • 4-5 bundles of soba (buckwheat) noodles
  • 2 carrots, cut into thick matchsticks
  • 4 large bok choy
  • 1 medium onion, sliced across into thin strips
  • 5-7 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tbs black bean paste
  • 2 tsp red pepper flakes (adjust to your "heat" level putting more or less)
  • 4 tbs balsamic vinegar
  • 2-3 tbs jaggery (raw cane sugar) or brown sugar
  • a little salt to taste
  • 5-7 tbs olive oil

- Cook soba noodles in a boiling water to al dente stage (slightly undercooked). Drain and rinse with a cold water. Set aside.

- Make sauce mixing together, black bean paste, balsamic vinegar, red pepper flakes, sugar and garlic.

- In a hot oil, in a large skillet (or wok!), cook onion and carrot, stirring for 1 minute. Then add bok choy and cook for another couple minutes or until bok choy wilts down. Sprinkle vegetables with some salt.

- Add noodles, stir nicely to mix with a vegetables. Add sause, stir for another couple minutes to heat everything through. Take off the heat - done! Enjoy!



As you can see, I'm not using wok - I figured out that wok is useless with electric stove such as mine. Wok is intended for using on a flame stoves (gas stoves at least) (sigh... :()
Nevertheless, use regular frying pan - you'll be fine!

My bok choy is trying to escape my pan.. In a matter of seconds it will give up and will fall down - just keep turning it over  - tongs are very useful here.

Noodles are in, sauce is in too - now just stir with tongs or use two spatulas as I did here.

At this point, you can adjust taste and add some more salt (or soy sauce) or pepper flakes, or balsamic vinegar, or sugar. Usually taste of stir fry is very forgiving and you won't need to add anything.

This is "enjoy" part.. Really, enjoy!
If you don't have wok to make your stir fry - use large skillet, you won't see a difference. At least, my stir fry, I described in this post, is no worse in any way than stir fry I've being treated to yesterday, at a local fancy oriental food place. Below is a picture I took there - you can see how huge the flame is, it hugs wok all around, from bottom to a top.
Comparing to a swift and hectic wok-on-a-flame stir frying at a restaurant, my skillet-on-electric-stove home process looks quiet, almost tranquil which I find very much enjoyable :)

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