Thursday, August 2, 2007

Soba and Tempeh Stir-Fry

I used 100% buckwheat soba noodles for this dish. And you can use whatever vegetables you want, as long as you cut them into sizes that will finish cooking at the same time. Or if you blanch the vegetables, such as cauliflower or broccoli, before adding them to the stir-fry, it helps. This time, I used cauliflower, summer squash, zucchini, shredded carrots, and red bell pepper. Here is how to assemble this dish:

Soba and Tempeh Stir-Fry, adapted from a recipe from Candle Cafe

Ingredients for the marinade:

2 cups water

1 cup (or up to 1.5 cups) smooth peanut butter
1/4 cup brown rice vinegar
1/2 small red onion, minced
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
2 tablespoons minced ginger
1 garlic clove, minced
up to 1 tablespoon crushed red chili flakes, to taste (amount depends on how spicy your flakes are)
1 tablespoon ketchup (optional, I skipped it)
1/4 cup shoyu or tamari soy sauce
1 tablespoon hot sauce
1/4 cup agave nectar (or substitute a few tablespoons of honey)
1 tablespoon sesame oil

Other ingredients:

1 package tempeh
1 package soba noodles
oil for stir frying
onion, chopped
2 teaspoons garlic, minced
2 teaspoons ginger, minced
assorted vegetables cut into appropriate stir-fry sizes
chopped cilantro
fresh lime juice
hot sauce
ground roasted peanuts, optional

1. In a blender, blend the marinade ingredients.

2. After blending the marinate, cut a package of tempeh into cubes. Place tempeh pieces in a nonreactive dish and coat with the marinade. Refrigerate for at least a half hour, or overnight.

3. Cut assorted vegetables into appropriate sizes for a stir-fry, plus mince some garlic and ginger, and chop some onion. Examples of vegetables to use are cabbage, bok choy, string beans, red or green bell peppers, mushrooms, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, summer squash, etc.

4. Boil water for soba noodles. After water comes to a boil, add salt and a bit of oil, then the noodles. Boil for 8 to 10 minutes, until just tender. Drain and set aside.

5. Heat 2 or 3 tablespoons of oil in a wok or similar pan over high heat. Remove tempeh from marinade, saving the marinade. Drain excess moisture from the tempeh and add it to the hot wok. Saute about 5 minutes. Add garlic, ginger, and onion and whichever vegetables need the most time to cook. After five minutes, add the softer/quicker-cooking vegetables and saute 2 more minutes. Add marinade bit by bit until it has the desired consistency, tossing to coat the vegetables and to heat the marinade, for 5 or 10 minutes until flavors have developed.

6. Season with some fresh lime juice, fresh chopped cilantro, and hot sauce if desired, for extra kick. Or add a bit more sesame oil or shoyu, to taste.

7. Serve stir-fry over the soba noodles, or add soba to the stir fry and stir gently to coat with the marinade. Optionally garnish with additional chopped cilantro and ground roasted peanuts.

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