Thursday, July 21, 2005

Green Tea Noodle Salad (or, how I got my comments back)

Green tea noodle salad

The comments on the blog have decreased of late. With unfailing confidence, I assume this is more a result of the content rather than the quality. With this in mind, I have come to the following conclusions and changes:
- Blame myself – are you mad? Never!
- Blame technology – I’ve removed my old friend the haloscan comments and moved onto simple blogger comments / blogger hack comments... see how they entice you.
- Leave Japan – I’ve left Japan now and will refocus my efforts on quality recipes rather than the more travel type writing of late.
- Quality recipes - I reckon that one is covered off below...

With no further ado – here is a salad from Peter Gordon’s “Salad”... appropriate name for the book. Peter is the chef at my favourite brunch restaurant; downstairs at Providores in London. This recipe appears more complicated than it is…

For the almonds
100 g almonds
1 tsp pimenton
1 tsp icing sugar
1 tsp sesame seeds
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp roasted sesame oil

Preheat the oven to 170 c. Almond skin is thought to have antioxidant properties (increase resistance of LDL to oxidation), therefore, it breaks my heart (get it?), but blanch the almonds (approximately 2 minutes in boiling water / freshen in cold water) to remove the skins. The reason for blanching seems to be that the skin is fibrous and somewhat bitter (comments or other suggestions welcome). A knife is useful to remove these. Mix with other ingredients. Line a baking tray with parchment and spread nuts out flat. Cook in oven for 10-15 minutes tossing occasionally. Leave out to cool and chop.

For the “main”
Green tea or Soba Noodles for 4 people
400 g pak choy
2 spring onions
300 g mushrooms
2 tbsp soy sauce
200 g firm tofu
2 tbsp flour
Vegetable oil for frying

Boil the noodles as appropriate – using cold water to refresh once cooked. Blanch the pak choy (we didn’t have any so just used cabbage) by plunging in boiling water for 30 seconds. Drain and refresh. Sauté the mushrooms in a frying pan with some sesame oil, add soy sauce and take off the heat. Cut the tofu into cubes (1.5 cm). Press out the water using kitchen towel. Leave for 10 minutes. Coat with flour and fry in a few mm of oil until golden. Set all aside.

For the wasabi mirin dressing
1 tsp wasabi paste
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
2 tbsp mirin
3 tbsp sunflower oil
Salt and pepper

The dressing is amazing! We didn’t have any wasbi paste, but made it from powder. Mix all ingredients and whisk in the oil prior to seasoning.

Peter goes the extra step to suggest how to present the food. Put half of the dressing into the noodles to marinate. Place the tofu, pak choy and mushrooms (individually) on a bed of noodles. Drizzle remaining dressing over. Finally put the almonds on top. Serve.


Anonymous said...

Hi Coops...couldn't leave you out there twisting in the wind with no comments :>) In all my Asian food travels, I have yet to hear of green tea noodles. Love the tea, so the noodles must be equally tasty, although I find that so many flavors are significantly mitigated once they become pasta.I'll have to put green tea noodles on my list and look for them the next time I'm in Japantown. And the wasabi dressing sounds 'oishii', although I might be tempted to use sesame oil instead. Can't get enough of the stuff. But perhaps the sunflower oil was intentionally chosen not to overpower the other ingredients in the vinaigrette. Although it's pretty hard to overpower the taste of wasabi. Glad you made it back from Japan safe and sound.  

Posted by Celeste

Anonymous said...

hey celeste, thanks for the comment. i realised that when i uninstalled haloscan i lost all of my previous comments ... nice.

on the green tea noodles, it was the first time for me to hear of them. apparently they are made from wheat, but have powdered green tea added during the noodle process. they're surprisingly tasty considering they are kind of 'junk' food. hmmm. it's morning here, now i'm hungry... 

Posted by coops

Anonymous said...

mentioned your question to blanca yesterday. she said that green tea noodles are probably more australian / nz / fusion than japanese. so i guess you won't have much luck in a japantown - seems like it's teasing us though.. 

Posted by steve

Clare Eats said...

I love the green tea noodles, I buy japanese branded ones at the asian supermarket.... so I thought they were japanese.
The salad looks great. I am definately going to be making this in the future.. but what is pimeton?? I have never heard of it..

But for the comments you need to change the "comments" link on the main page. it is just above where you add the blogger hack. If you have any problems just send me another email :)

Anonymous said...

hey clare - pimenton is a spanish seasoning used in many of the national dishes; chorizo to paella. it's basically a dried chilli pepper. mcgee recommends its use not only for flavour, but also for its thickening properties... (note: i only know this now). 

Posted by steve

Anonymous said...

Thanks heaps :) I will try and find some! 

Posted by clare eats

Anonymous said...

Interesting blog. You make some good points. You might be interested in herbal store tea. There's a vague connection to what's been discussed here.

tea said...

Looks good. You could probably add some loose leaf tea to the recipe. Put it on at the end as a garnish and for flavor.

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