Cashew & Almond Soba Noodle Salad

I didn’t quite make it in by July, but phew!  Another Daring Cooks’ Challenge, and I get to make my own nut butter!

The July 2010 Daring Cooks’ Challenge was hosted by Margie of More Please and Natashya of Living in the Kitchen with Puppies. They chose to challenge Daring Cooks to make their own nut butter from scratch, and use the nut butter in a recipe. Their sources include Better with Nut Butter by Cooking Light Magazine, Asian Noodles by Nina Simonds, and Food Network online.

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All the Daring Cooks were raving about this cold soba noodle salad with the Asian nut butter dressing, and it looked right up my alley!  Soba noodles?  Check.  Cashew/Almond butter?  Check.  Mint?  Check.  And yum.

Next time?  I’m totally adding green onions, julienned carrots, and any other veggies I may have lurking in the fridge.  And this might be my favourite dressing ever.  I need it on mango salad, stat.  And then everything else in sight.

And making nut butter?  I don’t know why I had hyped it up in my mind as this BIG SCARY thing.  It was simple, easy, and actually fun.  And if you’ve got the food processor out to make nut butter, you might as well make this dressing.  Which would also be awesome (without the extra water added) on warm soba noodles.  Just do it.

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Cashew & Almond Soba Noodle Salad
Serves 4

Cashew/Almond Butter: (note 1 c. of nuts will yield 1/2c. nut butter for recipe below)

  • 1/3 c. cashews
  • 2/3 c. almonds

Cashew Dressing: (makes about 1 1/2 c. dressing)

  • 2-3cm (1″) slice of fresh ginger, grated
  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • ½ c. cashew/almond butter (from recipe above)
  • ¼ c. tamari
  • 1 Tbsp. maple syrup
  • 3 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp. sesame oil
  • 1/4 c.water
  • 2 tsp. chili garlic hot sauce (we use Sriracha)

Noodle Salad:

  • 225 g. (1/2 lb.) soba noodles
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 8 oz tofu, cut into cubes
  • 1 red pepper, julienned
  • 1 shallot, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 c. mint, sliced thinly into ribbons
  • 1 Tbsp. cashews, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. sesame seeds
  • Lime wedges

Directions:

  1. Make Cashew/Almond Butter: Grind nuts in food processor for about 2 minutes until smooth.  If it doesn’t look like it will come together, keep blitzing.  It will work!  If you are using this nut butter in another recipe, feel free to add salt to taste if you are using unsalted nuts.
  2. Prepare Cashew Dressing: Combine ginger, garlic, cashew/almond butter, tamari, maple syrup, vinegar, sesame oil, water, and hot sauce in food processor or blender. Process/blend until smooth and the dressing is pourable.  Feel free to adjust the consistency to your liking by adding more water or cashew butter.
  3. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.  Drain noodles and set aside.
  4. Heat oil in a large pan over medium-high heat.  Add tofu, and cook (turning & stirring frequently) for about 5 minutes, until the edges are crispy and browned.
  5. Combine noodles, raw veggies, and mint in a large bowl. Add about 1/2 c. cashew dressing; toss gently to coat. Add more cashew dressing as desired.  Top with tofu, chopped cashews, and sesame seeds.  Serve with lime wedges and extra hot sauce at the table.

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Categories: Main Course, Salad, Sauce, Vegan, Vegetarian

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7 Comments on “Cashew & Almond Soba Noodle Salad”

  1. bonne_santé
    August 11, 2010 at 1:13 am #

    It was supremely silly of me to read this while ravenous. Cashew dressing – genius!

  2. August 11, 2010 at 9:20 am #

    I actually have to stop reading blogs after about 9pm, or make sure I have a snack with me… it’s silly indeed!

    But yes, this is an AMAZING salad, and the dressing was lovely over warm soba in a stirfry, too.

  3. August 14, 2010 at 11:16 pm #

    That looks so awesome. I could eat a bowl right now!

  4. Jen
    January 30, 2011 at 11:22 pm #

    I just made the dressing and WOW!!! This has a lot of flavor! I used it as a salad dressing (because I had no noodles on hand) and it was delish – just thinned it out a bit with some water. Next time I’ll definitely try it as intended. So much garlic, so much heat – love it! I was looking for a non-peanut peanut-type sauce and I’ve found it. Thanks so much!

    • January 31, 2011 at 8:40 am #

      Glad you loved it, Jen!

      That’s a great idea to use it as just a salad dressing — on my list to try now 🙂 thanks for letting me know!

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Cold Rolls with Spicy Almond Cashew Dipping Sauce | The Kitchen Operas - September 9, 2010

    […] noodles.  You could also use the Almond Hazelnut Dipping Sauce (from the Tofu Satay recipe) or the Cashew Almond Dressing (from the Cashew & Almond Soba Noodle Salad).  Feel free to use whatever nut butter you have on hand, I tend to alternate between […]

  2. Zucchini Noodles à la Grecque | The Kitchen Operas - November 20, 2010

    […] can’t wait to try out more veggie-noodle options — I’m thinking of an Asian-inspired almond butter dressing cold zucchini noodle salad.  Mmmm.  But for now: Greek-style zucchini […]

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