Soba Noodles With Spinach and Tofu

By The Canadian Living Test Kitchen authors of The International Collection

Cold buckwheat noodle dishes like this are a summertime treat in Japan. The creamy texture of soft tofu is critical to this dish, so avoid the firmer varieties.

1 pkg (250 g) Japanese buckwheat (soba) noodles
1 lb (450 g) fresh spinach, trimmed
1 pkg (10 oz/300 g) soft tofu, drained and cubed
2 green onions, thinly sliced diagonally
2 Tbsp thin strips nori (optional)
1 Tbsp toasted sesame seeds

Soba Sauce:
1 piece (about 4 inches/10 cm) dried kelp (konbu)
1 cup bonito flakes
½ cup mirin
⅓ cup sodium-reduced soy sauce
2 Tbsp granulated sugar
1 Tbsp sake

Soba Sauce: In saucepan, soak kelp in 2 cups water for 15 minutes. Bring just to boil over medium heat; remove kelp and discard. Stir bonito flakes into water in pan; simmer for 6 minutes. Add mirin, soy sauce, sugar and sake; return to boil. Strain through cheesecloth-lined sieve into heatproof measuring cup; let cool completely.

Meanwhile, in saucepan of boiling water, cook noodles according to package instructions, about 5 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold running water. Drain well; shake. Set aside to air-dry for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in covered skillet, steam spinach with ¼ cup water, stirring occasionally, just until wilted. Drain in colander; press out water.

Toss together noodles, spinach and about 1 cup of the soba sauce; divide among 4 bowls. Top with tofu; sprinkle with green onions, nori (if using), and sesame seeds. Serve with remaining soba sauce, adding as desired and tossing to coat.

Makes 4 servings. per serving: about 369 cal, 20 g pro, 4 g total fat (1 g sat. fat), 64 g carb, 6 g fibre, 0 mg chol, 918 mg sodium, 725 mg potassium. % RDI: 22% calcium, 44% iron, 106% vit A, 18% vit C, 92% folate.

Tip | The noodles, tofu, dried kelp, bonito flakes and nori are easy to find at Japanese markets. Many other Asian markets and some supermarkets carry them too.

To read the review for Canadian Living: The International Collection, please click here

Photo courtesy of Transcontinental Books

Excerpted from Canadian Living: The International Collection by The Canadian Living Test Kitchen. Copyright © 2011 by Transcontinental Books. Copyright © 2011 by The Canadian Living Test Kitchen. Excerpted by permission of Transcontinental. All rights reserved.

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