Soba noodles are long, thin Japanese noodles made from buckwheat. Here, they're tossed in a gingery vinaigrette that does double duty as a marinade for the salmon. Since you can prepare the salad while the fish is cooking, the whole recipe comes together in under 30 minutes -- great for busy nights when you still want a special meal. P.S. If you don't eat fish, the soba salad is great on its own!
Tips: For a more formal presentation, ask your fishmonger to cut the salmon into 4 4-ounce skinless fillets, and leave the portions whole after cooking. To serve, divide the soba salad among 4 plates or shallow bowls. Top each with an individual portion of salmon and 1/4 of the avocado chunks. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds or sliced scallions if desired.
There are several types of soba noodles -- some are made of 100% buckwheat, others contain a blend of buckwheat and wheat. There are also specialty varieties that contain yam flour, mugwort, or green tea. I prefer soba made with 100% buckwheat for its distinctive flavor. If you purchase noodles made from a blend of flours, look for those that are predominantly buckwheat for the best flavor and texture.
- 1 pound center-cut salmon fillet (skin removed)
- For the Dressing & Marinade:
- 1/4 c up tamari soy sauce (reduced sodium is fine)
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 2 tablespoons neutral-flavored oil (such as grapeseed or canola)
- 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup (preferably Grade B)
- 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon fresh ginger (finely grated)
- For the Soba Salad:
- 1 (8-ounce) package buckwheat soba
- 24 asparagus spears (trimmed)
- 1 yellow bell pepper (cored and cut into thin strips)
- 2 carrots (peeled, trimmed, and julienned)
- 1 avocado (peeled, pitted, and cut into 1/2-inch chunks)
- Preheat the oven to 400° F.
- Place the fish in a baking dish.
- Whisk together the tamari, orange juice, oil, rice vinegar, maple syrup, sesame oil, and ginger until emulsified.
- Pour half of the dressing over the fish and allow it to marinate while the oven preheats.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
- Add the soba noodles and cook for six to eight minutes until al dente.
- Place the soba in a colander, rinse under cold running water, and drain.
- Transfer the soba to a large bowl.
- Pour the remaining dressing over the soba noodles and toss together. Set aside.
- Bake the fish uncovered in the preheated oven, basting periodically, until cooked through, about 20 to 25 minutes, depending upon the thickness of the fillet. (The fish is ready when it is opaque in the center and flakes easily with a fork.)
- While the fish is baking, prepare the vegetables: add one inch of water to a large, deep skillet or chef's pan, and bring to a boil.
- Add the asparagus, reduce the heat, and simmer just until bright green, but still crisp, about one to two minutes.
- Drain the asparagus and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.
- Chop the asparagus into one-inch pieces.
- Add the asparagus, yellow pepper, and carrots to the soba, and toss together.
- When the fish is ready, break it into chunks with a fork.
- Top the soba with salmon and avocado, and serve. Enjoy!
|Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)|