In the summer, I like most of my food raw, cold or barely cooked. This means big salads, smoothies and anything that can fit on a grill. If it must be cooked inside, it needs to be quick cooking so that the house (and the cook, aka ME) doesn't get too warm. Perhaps an exception to the "no hot food" is Asian dishes. I don't know why, but a good Thai kra pow or Japanese noodle soup are light and refreshing to me.
Thus, when the cover of Fine Cooking featured a bowl of Asian noodles, I bought it. And I was not disappointed. Inside was a variant of the recipe below (they used beef with their broccoli) which is fabulous not only because it can be eaten cold, room temperature or hot but also because with the exception of an orange you can keep all the ingredients in your pantry or freezer making this a great, last-minute summertime meal!
Plus, broccoli and spring peas are in the farmer's market right now and this would be a great dish to highlight them.
Peanut Soba with Vegetables
Adapted from Fine Cooking
3 Tbsp soy sauce
1 medium navel orange
1 1.5-in piece of ginger, peeled and sliced
1 large clove of garlic, peeled
1/4 c creamy peanut butter
1 Tbsp oyster sauce
8 oz soba noodles
3 Tbsp canola oil
1 bag of frozen broccoli (at least 1o oz), defrosted (Note: I find Trader Joe's frozen broccoli retains a bit of crunch)
1/2 bag of frozen peas, defrosted
Chopped peanuts (optional)
3 Tbsp. chopped fresh mint (optional)
1. Put pot of salted water on the stove and bring to boil.
2. Meanwhile, zest orange and juice it. Put ginger and garlic into food processor and pulse until mix. Remove all but 1 tsp of the mixture from the food processor & place into another bowl.
3. Add peanut butter, zest, 2 Tbsp of orange juice and 2 Tbsp of soy sauce to the food processor and blend until smooth, adding 1-2 Tbsp of water to thin out, if needed.
4. Put the remaining orange juice, the oyster sauce, the remaining soy sauce & 2 Tbsp of water into a small bowl.
5. Cook soba according to package. Be sure to drain well. When done, toss with peanut sauce mixture.
6. In a skillet, heat oil with the ginger/garlic mixture until fragrant. Add broccoli and peas and stir-fry. Finally, add oyster sauce mixture and stir to coat vegetables.
7. Combine soba and stir-fried vegetables. Top with mint and/or peanuts, if desired.
(This is also pretty tasty straight from the fridge)