This is a quick and easy salad that you can bring together in minutes using leftovers. Sauteed chicken, pork, fish, shrimp or tofu would all be delicious in this salad. As for the vegetables, use whatever’s in the fridge: zucchini, sliced radishes, cabbage, blanched peas, chunks of cucumber or baby spinach leaves would all be nice substitutions. A colorful and nutritious salad, perfect for summer when it’s too hot to cook anything.
Makes 2 meal-sized portions
1 skinless salmon fillet (about 4 oz/140 g)
1 tsp [5 ml] toasted sesame oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the salad:
4 oz [115 g] dried soba noodles
½ red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 medium carrot, julienned (about 2.5 oz [70g])
2.5 oz [70 g] broccoli florets
2 handfuls bean sprouts, thoroughly washed
2 scallions (green onions), thinly sliced
2 tbsp [30 ml] chopped peanuts
1 tbsp [15 ml] sesame seeds
Fresh coriander, chopped, to taste
For the dressing:
6 tbsp [90 ml] Japanese soy sauce
3 tbsp [45 ml] rice wine vinegar
2 tbsp [30 ml] peanut or canola oil
1 tbsp [15 ml] toasted sesame oil
1½ tbsp[22 ml] creamy peanut butter
1 small garlic clove, minced
1 tbsp [15 ml] fresh ginger, grated or finely minced
1 tsp [5 ml] sambal oelek (or 1 small red thai chili, minced)
1 tsp [5 ml] sugar
Sprinkle salt and freshly ground black pepper on both sides of the salmon fillet. Heat the sesame oil in a pan over medium-high heat. When the oil is shimmering, put the salmon in the pan and cook it about 3 minutes per side, or until it’s just cooked and flakes easily with a fork. Remove from the pan and let cool at room temperature.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook soba noodles according to package instructions, stirring occasionally so they don’t stick. Drain and rinse well under cold water.
Make the dressing by combining all ingredients in a small food processor or blender and mix until dressing is smooth.
In a large bowl, toss the noodles with the bell pepper, carrot, broccoli florets, bean sprouts, scallions and dressing to taste (you may have too much dressing; keep what’s leftover and use it within a week). Break up the cooked salmon fillet in chunks and add it to the bowl. Add half the peanuts and sesame seeds and toss well. Serve in large bowls, each portion sprinkled with fresh coriander and the remaining peanuts and sesame seeds.
Recipe Credit: Adapted from Jennifer Segal, Serious Eats