Jackie's Cold Buckwheat Noodles with Julienned Vegetables

Quick Weeknight Meals Recipe Contest 2009

Recipe: Cold Buckwheat Noodles with Julienned Vegetables
Category: Vegetarian/International
How long does it take? 15-20 minutes
Name: Jackie
Why is it a favorite meal? It requires almost no cooking making it quicker than takeout. It's healthy and easily adaptable for the non-vegetarian and gluten-free members of the family. It's also a "fridge cleaner" so swap out the veggies with what you have on hand.

Note: This is an international entry so will be eligible for exhibition only. At this point, Apartment Therapy can only award prizes to U.S. residents.

Cold Buckwheat Noodles with Julienned Vegetables

INGREDIENTS

Noodles:
3 bundles (390g) Japanese buckwheat noodles (for gluten-free, use 100% buckwheat noodles)

Broth
1 Cup Vegetable broth (or use chicken broth for a non-vegetarian option)
1/2 Cup Japanese soy sauce
1 Tablespoon Toasted sesame oil
1/4 Cup Rice vinegar, seasoned or plain
2 Tablespoons Organic cane sugar (can substitute white sugar or agave/honey/brown rice syrup)
1 Teaspoon Finely grated ginger
1/4 - 1/2 Teaspoon Chili flakes, preferably Korean red chili powder (optional)

Topping
4 large eggs, Hard boiled (Omit if vegan. Quail eggs are an elegant substitute.)
2 Medium Japanese cucumbers or ½ English cucumber, julienned
2 Medium Carrots, julienned
1 Small Red pepper, julienned
3 Large Red radishes, thinly sliced
3 Shitake mushrooms, stems removed and sliced
2 Green onions, white and green parts, julienned
1/2 Cup Radish sprouts
1 Tablespoon Toasted black sesame seeds for garnish (or regular sesame seeds)
A few sprigs of cilantro for garnish

INSTRUCTIONS:
1) Boil a medium pot of water and cook buckwheat noodles according to directions. Drain and rinse with cold water. Divide between 4 large bowls.

2) Simultaneously hard-boil the eggs, peel and slice in half lengthwise.
(To make perfect hard-boiled eggs: cover the eggs in a pot with water and bring to a boil. Put a lid on the pot and set off the heat for 12 minutes. Rinse with cold water to help with peeling.)

3) While the eggs and noodles are cooking, mix together all the ingredients for the cold broth in a bowl, set aside. Then prep the veggies.

4) To finish, divide the broth and toppings among the 4 bowls of noodles, broth in first. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds, top with a few cilantro sprigs and serve.

• For a non-vegetarian variation, try adding julienned honey ham or other deli meats. Just have them slice it in 1/4" slices so it's easier to julienne.

• For a Thai-inspired variation, add 1/4 cup chunky natural peanut butter to the broth and whisk in.

Thanks Jackie, and good luck! Readers, give Jackie a thumbs up if you like this recipe!

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