Cold soba salad with cucumber and peanut

I did a bad thing once. I watched my housemate’s girlfriend try to cook soba noodles and they were all stuck together ­– this fat gluey slab of semi cooked, flaccid grey noodles being held up with tongs, followed by “I don’t know what’s wrong with them”

Could I have offered to help? Yep.  

Did I? Nope.

She used up all my girly bathroom things. So I sat there, silently enjoying her failure.

Soba noodles are notoriously sticky and clump together because of excess starch. Fixing this is as simple as draining the cooked noodles, dumping them in cold water and washing the starch off. Really wash them. Rub them together and they’ll just come apart. See? Easy. But the packet doesn’t tell you that.

Here’s the how-to on a peanut cucumber noodle salad, I mean, they’re already cold, so why wouldn’t you?

You need
1 bundle of buckwheat soba noodles

4 big spoonful’s of crunchy peanut butter
4 big spoonfuls boiling water
2 tbs Japanese light soy sauce

1.5 tbs sesame oil (1 tbs for the sauce, half a tbs for the noodles)
1/2 tsp sugar
1 tbs toasted sesame seeds
1 tbs of roasted peanuts, roughly chopped or crushed
3 spring onions/scallions, just the green tops, finely sliced

1 small cucumber, seeds removed and julienned (matchsticks, yo)
Shichimi to taste

Melt the peanut butter down in the boiled water, add the soy sauce, sugar and sesame oil and mix well to combine.

Cook the noodles to the packet instructions, they’re not meant to be al dente. drain, wash in really cold water, drizzle with a little sesame oil, just in case they still want to stick.

In a big bowl add the cold noodles noodles, cucumber, the spring onion and peanut sauce and toss to combine. Top with the sesame seeds, peanuts, shichimi and you’re good to go.