Chilled Soba Noodles

Most well-stocked grocery stores will have what you need to make this great summer dish.

YOU WILL NEED

For the sauce:

  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • ½-ounce kombu (dried kelp)
  • ½-ounce bonito flakes
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce or tamari
  • 1/2 cup mirin 

For soba noodles:

  • 1 hot house cucumber, peeled and halved
  • 1 lb dried soba noodles
  • 1 cup thinly sliced green onion, divided
  • 2 T black sesame seeds, divided
  • 1 sheet nori, cut into thin strips
  • Wasabi powder or paste


METHOD 

Place the kombu and the water in a small saucepan. Bring to a gentle simmer. After one minute, remove the kombu and discard. Remove the pan from the heat, add the bonito shavings and do not stir. When the bonito has sunk to the bottom, after a minute or two, strain the broth through a fine strainer, pressing on the bonito shavings with a spatula to extract all the liquid. Discard the bonito, reserving the broth.


In a small saucepan, bring the mirin to a boil. Add the kombu broth and the soy sauce and simmer for 3-5 minutes. Remove from the heat, allow to cool to room temperature, then refrigerate until chilled. 

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the soba noodles and cook until al dente, about 4 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold water or plunge into an ice bath. Drain and set aside. 


Prepare wasabi by combining powder with water to make a paste.  


Remove seeds from cucumber using a spoon and cut into 1cm slices.


When ready to serve, combine soba, cucumber, 1 T sesame seeds, 1/2 cup green onion and about 3/4 of the sauce. Stir to combine. Top with nori slices, remaining sesame seeds and green onion and serve with extra sauce and wasabi for guests to add as they like.