Soba Noodles with Kale, Tofu, and Furikake

  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 4 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 3 scallion stalks, thinly sliced
  • 10 ounces kale, rinsed and torn into bite-size pieces
  • 3-4 medium carrots, grated
  • 1 package extra firm tofu (approximately 19 ounces)
  • 12 ounces dried soba noodles, prepared according to instructions on package
  • Furikake
In a small bowl, mix together the soy sauce, 1 tablespoon sesame oil, vinegar, honey, and scallions. Let the sauce marry while you prepare the other ingredients.

For the kale, bring a medium pot of water to boil. Add the kale leaves and cook for 4 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold water, then squeeze out the excess water. Set aside.

Cut the tofu into 1/2-inch cubes and lay on paper towels to absorb excess moisture. On medium-high heat, saute the tofu in 1 tablespoon of sesame oil for 2-3 minutes on each side to lightly sear the outside and heat the inside. Set aside.

TIP: For an exceptional sear on the tofu, make sure to squeeze out as much of the water as possible 30 minutes to an hour before cooking. I like to slice the tofu, wrap it in a clean dish towel, set a flat surface on top, and weigh the surface down with heavy objects. It really gets the job done.

Combine the carrots, kale, seared tofu, and soba in a large bowl and toss with the soy-sesame mixture.

To serve, transfer to bowls or plates and sprinkle with furikake.

Serves 4 to 6.

Recipe adapted from Appetite for China.